Mnuchin takes another spin as Trump's global defender-in-chief
Mnuchin takes another spin as Trump's global defender-in-chief
After Stock Market Drop, President Trump Says Federal Reserve ‘Has Gone Crazy’
13 October, 2018, 19:01
President Donald Trump slammed the Federal Reserve as "crazy" for its interest-rate increases this year in comments hours after the worst USA stock market sell-off since February. Rogers says that Trump is wrong about his attitude to the Fed's policy.
The Fed traditionally remains outside the purview of the President, though Trump has at moments blurred the lines by commenting on Fed policy.
Fed Chair Jerome Powell, whom Trump named to lead the central bank, has repeatedly brushed off the comments saying officials do not pay attention to politics. "But I think it's far too stringent far too fast". "They're so tight. I think the Fed has gone insane".
"The market seems to have accepted the Fed's rate path", said Megan Greene, chief economist at Manulife Asset Management.
Sarah Sanders' statement was correct, but it seems clear to us that the Federal Reserve leadership is not in sync with President's economic goals. However, during his last press conference following the Federal Open Market Committee's most recent two-day meeting in September, Powell said he and his colleagues were focused on carrying out the bank's dual mandate of achieving maximum employment and stable prices. Powell defended the Fed's plans to raise interest rates gradually in the coming months, saying it was appropriate policy in such "extraordinary" economic times.
Stocks have been under pressure since the yield on 10-year US Treasury bonds jumped above three percent last week, a sudden move that raised fears of an overheating economy, speeding inflation and more aggressive Federal Reserve interest rate increases. Are interest rates too high?
Analysts attribute some of the recent share price declines to sales by investors anxious that trade tensions will hurt growth, while trade tariffs and rising interest rates raise costs for businesses.
On the back of historically-low unemployment rates, a humming economy, and a record bull market, the Fed has already hiked interest rates three times this year.
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"This is just who we are and I think who we will always be, which is, we're a group who - we're quite removed from the political process", Powell said in a recent interview. And higher rates down the road would make stocks look even more like bonds' ugly brother. The IMF cited Trump's tariffs and rising interest rates.
Last week's jump in yields followed strong United States data but many analysts have been anticipating dynamics in the bond market to change due to expectations that central banks in Europe and Japan will soon phase out bond-buying programmes. In other words, the steady rise in the Fed's policy rate, and estimates for future hikes, haven't translated into harsh financing conditions for the overall economy yet. "The problem in my opinion is Treasuries and the Fed".
The sell-off came a day after the International Monetary Fund said the world economy is plateauing and cut its growth forecast for the first time in more than two years, blaming escalating trade tensions and stresses in emerging markets.
It's often said that stock markets, whether good or bad, are unfairly linked to whoever sits in the Oval Office.
But for all the stock market palpitations and risks to particular interest-rate sensitive industries, the message to take from the recent rise in interest rates is an unambiguously good one: This expansion may have some life in it yet.
"The problem that I have is with the Fed".
The right thing includes doing "whatever it takes" to keep inflation from accelerating, he said.
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