Fed's Powell urges patience on U.S. rates, citing growth risks

August 8, 2016 4:21 AM EDT

Jerome Powell delivers remarks during a conference at the Brookings Institution in Washington August 3, 2015. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

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LONDON (Reuters) - The U.S. economy is at increasing risk of becoming trapped in a prolonged phase of slow growth that points to the need for lower interest rates than previously expected, Federal Reserve policymaker Jerome Powell was quoted as saying.

Powell, a member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, told the Financial Times he favored a "very gradual" path for any rises as U.S. economic outlook was dogged by global risks.

"The probability of an era of weaker growth, lower potential growth - that worries me more than it used to," he was quoted as saying in Monday's edition of the newspaper.

"With inflation below target, I think we can be patient."

Powell spoke on Thursday, the day before strong U.S. nonfarm payrolls numbers for July led to markets ramping up bets on a U.S. rate rise this year.

(Reporting by John Stonestreet Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)

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