New York (CNN) — Even as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell reassures the public about the state of the US economy, the organization is quietly laying off workers at its own doorstep.
The Federal Reserve system is cutting approximately 300 jobs through the end of the year, a Fed spokesperson confirmed to CNN on Friday.
This marks a rare drop in headcount at the central bank, the first since 2010. The Fed system employs about 21,000 people across its 12 regional reserve banks.
The spokesperson said the reductions, previously reported by Reuters, include a mix of layoffs, early retirements and opting not to fill vacant positions. The Fed declined to say how many people will be laid off.
The job cuts will mostly focus on support positions, including technology roles that are no longer needed, the Fed spokesperson said.
News of the job cuts comes just days after Powell expressed surprise at the resilience of the US economy in the face of inflation and surging interest rates.
“Economic activity has been stronger than we expected, stronger than I think everyone expected,” Powell told reporters on Wednesday in a press conference following the central bank’s latest monetary policy meeting.
Reflecting that optimism, Fed officials upgraded their forecast for economic growth and lowered their projection for unemployment.
However, Powell also conceded that cooling inflation back to healthy levels will likely require “some softening” of the jobs market and he warned that a soft landing is no guarantee.
Powell said a soft landing — where inflation is tamed but a recession is avoided — is “possible” but “ultimately this may be decided by factors that are outside of our control.”
™ & © 2023 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.