Next week's referendum on European Union membership by British voters was a factor in the US central bank declining to tighten monetary policy, Federal Reserve Chief Janet Yellen says.
The possibility of a so-called Brexit from the EU was "one of the uncertainties" discussed in this week's meetings of the Fed's monetary policy committee, she says.
Brexit "is something we discussed, and I think it's fair to say that it was one of the factors that factored into today's decision" to leave the Fed's benchmark interest rate at a historically low 0.375 per cent, Yellen says.
A British departure from the bloc "could have consequences for economic and financial conditions in global financial markets ... [and] in turn for the US economic outlook."
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