Jerome H. Powell, the Federal Reserve chairman, reiterated Thursday that the Fed plans to evaluate the health of the economy before moving ahead with any new interest rate increases.

Patience is the Fed’s new watchword, and Powell used it at least four times in his remarks.

He said that 2018 was “a very good year for the economy,” and that the Fed saw signs of continued momentum in the latest economic data. Financial markets, on the other hand, have shown signs of anxiety about the economic outlook, particularly the slowing pace of international growth.

“We have the ability to be patient and watch patiently and carefully as we watch the economy evolve,” Powell said Thursday in remarks before the Economic Club of Washington, D.C.

He said the Fed would wait to see “which of these two narratives is going to be the story of 2019.”

Read more in the New York Times.