Wednesday’s three-quarter-point rate hike was the latest move by the Federal Reserve to tame inflation.

But while monetary policy is important, it’s not the only factor at work.

Economists are watching closely for what’s known in academic circles as the “wage/price spiral,” and it’s a big concern.

In essence, the wage/price spiral is a self-fulfilling prophecy of expected inflation and subsequent wage increases to address higher prices. As paychecks go up, so do prices. And on and on.

This is why Fed officials have been working diligently to convey to consumers that the central bank is on top of things. Whether the bankers are or not, it’s all about perception.

Unless consumers believe high prices are a temporary phenomenon, they’ll accept inflation as a normal feature of the economy.

If they do, they’ll seek more pay from employers, many of which will feel obliged to boost salaries to avoid losing their top people.

Businesses, in turn, will recognize fatter paychecks as an excuse to raise prices even more so they can get a bigger piece of the action.

And there’s the spiral.

Inflationary expectations create their own reality — and it can be very tough to break such cycles, as was evident during inflationary spirals in the 1970s and ’80s.

“There’s a clock running here, where we have inflation running now for more than a year,” Fed Chairman Jerome Powell said recently.

“It would be bad risk management to just assume those longer-term inflation expectations would remain anchored indefinitely in the face of persistent high inflation,” he said. “So we’re not doing that.”

He and other financial authorities will continue communicating to consumers that even though an inflationary fire is burning, hoses are trained on the flames.

Which is to say, don’t worry your pretty heads about never-ending price increases.

It’s tricky, as Run-DMC put it. Managing an economy isn’t easy.

The next few months will be pivotal in seeing how consumers view the situation and how they’re responding, especially as higher rates make credit cards, mortgages and car loans more expensive .

Don’t be surprised if there are daily reminders that the Fed has this.

They really need you to believe that.