Uncertainty about economic growth in China, Canada, and elsewhere outside the U.S. is reason enough for the Federal Reserve to delay raising interest rates, a Fed official said Monday.

"I view the risks to the economic outlook as tilted to the downside," Federal Reserve governor Lael Brainard said Monday in an address to business economists in Washington.

"The downside risks make a strong case for continuing to carefully nurture the U.S. recovery, and argue against prematurely taking away the support that has been so critical to its vitality," Brainard said in prepared remarks.

Brainard, who as a member of the Fed's Board of Governors has a vote in each of its monetary policy decisions, used her comments to make the case against the Fed rushing to tighten monetary policy. In doing so, she appeared to set herself apart from Chairwoman Janet Yellen and others who have suggested that the time could be right for the Fed to raise rates this year, after targeting them near zero since 2008.

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