Interest Rates on the Rise Again - What does this mean?

Check out the article at for the whole story, but here's a quick summary.
At 2:40 pm today, the Federal Reserve raised it's short term interest rates 1/4 of point to 5%. Now what does this mean. The Federal rate has effects on the amount we pay on loans, credit cards, and home equity lines of credit. The Fed raises the rate to keep inflation down, but when rates are too high this can hurt the economy.

For example today you can get a loan for about 7% interest, if the Fed continues to raise interest rates 6 months from now you may be able to get the same exact loan for about 13% interest. Fewer people take out loans, fewer people purchase and consume etc. This is why it is important to lock in a low interest rate when you are getting a mortgage. If you don't get a low rate you end up paying thousands of dollars more and have to wait for interest rates to drop before refinancing.

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