After nearly a decade of flat rates, on Wednesday the Federal Reserve raised its key interest rate from a range of 0% – .25% to a range of .25% – .50%. As expected, it is a small increase but will have a rippling effect throughout the economy including investors, home buyers and financial institutions. The rate hike comes at a time of increased confidence in the market including improvements in the labor market, as well as confidence that inflation will be on the rise. The Federal Reserve’s action is considered to be the first in a series of gradual rate increases throughout 2016. Stay tuned.