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Fed's Kaplan says he's vigilant but patient on U.S.-China tensions

FILE PHOTO: Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Robert Kaplan speaks with an attendee at an annual energy conference at the Dallas Fed headquarters in Dallas, Texas, U.S. September 7, 2018. REUTERS/Ann Saphir

BROWNSVILLE, Texas (Reuters) - Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Robert Kaplan on Monday said he is "extremely vigilant" on the escalating trade tensions between the United States and China, though it could take months before there is more clarity on how the talks are shaping up.

"I think we’ll have to be patient in seeing how this is going to unfold over the next number of weeks and months," Kaplan told reporters after a talk at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley.

"What we don’t know right now is how long these issues will persist, how far will they go, will these tariffs, that have just been put on, and counter tariffs, will they be with us for months, weeks, or longer," he said.

"The trade situation creates uncertainty -- creates uncertainty for businesses, it creates uncertainty generally -- and uncertainty by and large, if it goes on for an extended period of time, probably is not helpful if you are a business and trying to manage your business ... it has some chilling effect on business."

(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)