WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve is not in a hurry to raise interest in 2019, a change that is likely to please President Donald Trump and Wall Street investors who urged the central bank to hit the pause button on any future interest rate increases.

The Fed opted Wednesday to leave interest rates unchanged - at a range of 2.25 to 2.5 percent — and the central bank signaled it was unlikely to hike them soon.

"In light of global economic and financial developments and muted inflation pressures, the [Fed] will be patient as it determines what future adjustments to the target range for the federal funds rate may be appropriate," the Fed said in a statement.

The stock market surged after the statement came out, with the Dow jumping up 1.7 percent, or more than 400 points. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index was up 1.5 percent, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq climbed 2 percent.

The Fed's wording was a noticeable change from last year when the Fed said that "further gradual increases" in interest rates were likely. That phrase was dropped entirely and the Fed also put out a separate statement saying it was prepared to adjust its plans for bringing down its balance sheet, if needed.

The Fed described the U.S. economy as "solid," a slight downgrade from last year when the central bank called it "strong," but Fed leaders remain upbeat and said the most likely path for the economy is sustained growth, low unemployment and modest inflation.

"I don't see a recession" in 2019, Fed chair Jerome Powell said earlier this month. "The U.S. economy is solid. It has good momentum coming into this year."

On Wednesday Powell said, "despite this positive outlook, over the pass few months, we've seen some cross currents and conflicting signals about the outlook."

In December, the Fed raised rates and predicted two more increases in 2019. Since then, markets plunged and China and Europe have flashed even more problems with their economies, leading to concerns of a sharp global slowdown or even a recession.

Most of Wall Street is now pricing in zero rate increases this year, according to the FedWatch tracker, and Trump has repeatedly told the Fed to stop raising rates. For now, the Fed is on hold, although the central bank has left open the possibility of increases later in the year.

Trump berated the central bank as "loco" and "too aggressive" in recent months. After the December rate increase, Trump even asked advisers whether it was possible to fire Powell, a move that would be unprecedented in a developed economy and difficult, if not impossible, according to the law.

The Fed has predicted that growth will slow from around 3 percent last year to 2.3 percent this year, a pace that is still solid but will be noticeably less than in 2018.