US strategist sees 'dovish conclusion' to rate hikes

US investors and analysts are trying to predict what central bankers will do next. Policymakers at the Federal Reserve raised interest rates on Wednesday by a quarter of a percentage point in their campaign to rein in inflation.

Fed officials have introduced 10 rate hikes in just over a year. Some analysts believe policymakers will take a pause. But they predict doing nothing may become difficult to justify.

"I actually think it's much harder to stay on the hold than it is to raise rates," said George Goncalves, who leads US macroeconomic strategy for MUFG. "You have to defend your position while you are not cutting or hiking."

Goncalves said policymakers are weighing the risks of persistent inflation against the threats to the financial system after the failure of several banks. He said, after an aggressive cycle of hikes, this may be the "dovish conclusion."