US Fed watching Ukraine situation 'very closely'

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said Wednesday that the US central bank is watching the situation in Ukraine closely amid worries about an escalation in tensions.

Speaking after a meeting of the Fed's monetary policy committee, in which the turmoil between the West and Russia over Ukraine was discussed, Yellen said that so far the policy makers did not see any "meaningful impacts" yet on the economy.

"It's something that we are monitoring very closely," she said at a news conference following the Federal Open Market Committee meeting.

"The direct trade linkages or exposures of the US banking system to the Ukraine and Russia are not large.... But obviously there are geopolitical risks here, that it's very important for us to be attentive to and to keep our eye on."

She said the Fed had not seen any broader global financial repercussions from the crisis sparked by Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula.

"But if this were to escalate, that would certainly be something that would be on our radar screen," she said.