BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — Amid continuous rising inflation globally, the Federal Reserve raised the federal funds rate by 75 basis points (bps).

What You Need To Know

  • The 0.75 percent Fed rate hike brought the benchmark interest rate to a 2.25-2.5 percent range

  • July’s rate hike was the second in as many months

  • The Federal Reserve will hold its next Federal Open Market Committee meeting in September

The move taken during the July Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting was the second 75-point hike in as many months done to slow inflation.

For small businesses like The Soup Shop in Melbourne, that meant any expansion plans they had are going on the back burner for now.

Owner Julie Shipley said they had considered opening a new shop down in Palm Bay in 2020, but back then, Shipley said the bank was wary about financing a new restaurant at that point. 

“The mortgage rates were so much lower then, that I don’t know if I would want to spend the money on that building now because it’s going to cost me so much more,” Shipley said. “So, it’s definitely slowed the expansion plans.”

Shipley opened her first restaurant back in 2009, but said it wasn’t until she went through the mentorship program with weVENTURE that she could make the business profitable. She said some of the business savvy she learned there is paying off now that the country is in another rocky economic climate. 

“They made me think about things in a whole different way. They made me reduce my inventory, which I wasn’t pleased about, but they were right and a few other things like that,” Shipley said. “I still use the lessons I learned in that program.”

 One area that remained fairly stable through the rate hike and will probably remain so is the housing market, according to Joe Harris, the chief operations officer for Melbourne-based Morgan Financial.

“Rates are pretty stabilized. I mean, yes, we see peaks and valleys, but for right now, if you’re looking to buy a house, and you’re qualified, there are actually more options than there were a year ago,” Harris said. 

He said those with existing mortgages who are in 30-year fixed-rate loans won’t see an impact on their mortgage from the Fed rate hike. Those in an adjustable rate mortgage, he said, might see their loan adjust upwards.

Harris said that there will be some short-term economic pain, but that in the long-term, it will be beneficial to the economy.

“Short-term, there’s going to be higher costs of things like credit cards, student loans, car payments, home equity lines of credits, personal loans, which will pull back demand. But again, that’s all intended to make the long-term better,” Harris said. “When you have the long-term better and there’s more stability, you’re going to see those rates come down just a little.”

The next FOMC meeting will take place on September 20-21.