By Siafa Lewis

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — All eyes will be on the Federal Reserve Wednesday. It could take more action against soaring inflation with its biggest interest rate hike in more than two decades.

It’s a delicate balancing act for the Federal Reserve. By raising interest rates to control inflation, they could actually tip the country into a recession.

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With the national average for a gallon of gas now topping $5, many families are taking a hard look at their budgets.

An interest rate hike means borrowing money will become more expensive.

Stock prices have been in freefall as investors and businesses prepare for Wednesday’s fed decision, and 401k and other retirement accounts are taking a hit.

The S&P 500 is down more than 20% this year. That’s called a bear market.

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Financial expert Suze Orman says it’s unclear how long it will last.

She has this advice.

“Don’t panic, and the reason I say that is how many times have we seen the market go down? If you’re somebody out there living paycheck-to-paycheck or you don’t have an emergency fund or you’re not funding a retirement account, you should stop going out to eat, going on vacation and doing all those things,” Orman said.

The Federal Reserve’s decision will be announced at 2 p.m.

Right now, the data points to those stock indexes opening higher on Wall Street Wednesday.

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CBS3’s Jan Carabeo contributed to this report.