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Interest rates likely to rise in small steps

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With the economy heating up, the Federal Reserve has indicated it will increase interest rates soon. But how much, and when? The Fed gave a hint last month when one of the central bank's key policy-makers, Ben Bernanke, said rates will rise in a series of small steps over many months or even a few years. Strong employment numbers and other indicators have many experts convinced the Fed will raise its short-term rate at its late-June meeting by one-quarter percentage point, to 1.25 percent.

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