Bostic: U.S. could near full employment in 2022, meet Fed rate hike conditions in 2023

March 25, 2021 1:53 PM EDT

FILE PHOTO: Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Raphael Bostic participates in a panel discussion at the American Economic Association/Allied Social Science Association (ASSA) 2019 meeting in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S., January 4, 2019. REUTERS/Christop

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. still has a long battle to wage in its jobs recovery but could return to full employment next year with the Federal Reserve possibly raising interest rates in 2023, Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic said on Thursday.

Bostic said his forecast has the U.S. "growing pretty steadily and strongly through 2021. I think inflation will start to move," he said.

"It is going to take some time for employment to get back to pre-COVID levels, but we will be through much of that by the end of 2022 such that the conditions will have been met for us to advance the lift-off in our rates in 2023. That is still nearly two years from now so there's a lot that's got to happen."

(Reporting by Howard Schneider; Editing by Chris Reese)

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