What the Fed rate hike means to you, and your wallet

Wed Dec 16, 2015 2:28pm EST
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By Liz Weston

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - For everyone who has been saying interest rates can only go up, well - now is their time. But what does the Federal Reserve's decision to raise interest rates actually mean for your wallet?

Probably not much for the near-term.

One small interest rate hike of one-quarter of a percentage point is unlikely to have much impact on your budget, but that does not mean you should ignore the Fed's first rate increase since 2006.

The move is likely to be the first of many and will gradually boost rates for a variety of consumer loans, said Greg McBride, chief financial analyst for Bankrate.com. It will give people a window to lock in current, still-low rates before they creep higher.

"Now is the time to take action, so you're not susceptible to the cumulative effect of rising interest rates," McBride said.

Here is what to expect:

MORTGAGES   Continued...

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) shortly after the announcement that the U.S. Federal Reserve had hiked interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade in New York, December 16, 2015.  REUTERS/Lucas Jackson