Fed's Kaplan says biggest threat to U.S. growth is workforce size

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Robert Kaplan on Tuesday said that the biggest risk to U.S. economic growth in 2017 is the size of the workforce, which is shrinking because of the aging population.


"I think this is an under-discussed, under-reported issue," Kaplan said at a Greater Houston Port Bureau luncheon, adding that immigration has historically contributed to workforce growth. He did not refer directly to immigration restrictions expected under U.S. President Donald Trump.


He repeated his call for raising interest rates sooner rather than later so that increases can be made gradually and slowly, reducing the chance of disruption to the economy.


(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)


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