The U.S. Federal Reserve is set to raise interest rates between three and four times this year, the chairman of JPMorgan Chase International told CNBC on Wednesday.
Speaking from the IIF conference in Frankfurt, Jacob Frenkel explained that each one of the economic conditions that the Fed had set for itself in order to justify the commencement of rate rises had now been satisfied.
"Economic activity in the U.S. is now much more robust than it was, the unemployment rate is at a very, very low level, the composition of unemployment is also healthy, the duration of unemployment is lower. And also inflationary pressures are now coming more towards the 2 percent target of the Fed," Frenkel outlined.
Following a consensus-beating jobs report last Friday, financial markets have now fully priced in the probability of a Fed rate hike of 25 basis points when the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) finishes its two days of deliberations later on Wednesday.
However, this month's anticipated rate rise should be interpreted as only the first of many such moves over the next 12 months, given that we are still so far away from a reasonable long-term configuration of interest rates, Frenkel said.
"We are still very close to zero while the normal configuration is around 3 percent or so…one needs to take the journey to go there," he affirmed.
"We should not think about it as a single step, we should think about it as a journey, as a strategy," Frenkel added.