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Expect rate hike this summer: Pimco's Mather

Pimco's Scott Mather is sticking to his prediction that the Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates this summer.

"They'll be moving very slowly, not in a mechanical fashion, up to probably a neutral policy rate that's around 2 percent," said Mather, the firm's chief investment officer in charge of U.S. core strategies.

"That's probably the best way to prolong the expansion."

Mather, speaking ahead of the Fed's statement Wednesday, told CNBC's "Power Lunch" that there will be no "apocalyptic" scenario when the central bank lifts off from zero interest rates.

He believes the Fed "will sort of indicate that the costs and risks of staying at zero are greater than the costs and risks of … beginning to normalize interest rates."

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That means there will be continued pressure for the dollar to strengthen and more market volatility, Mather said. However, he thinks that also means "quite a few opportunities."

In preparation for a rate hike, investors need to look at their portfolios to assess whether they have an above-average level of risk.

"If they do, it's a good time to be cutting back on that because we do expect that it is going to be a bit bumpier for financial markets in the next few quarters," he said.

Mather said in bond portfolios that means owning shorter-duration bonds.

He also said he's looking for opportunities to take bond risk in foreign markets.

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