Trump Slams Interest Rate Hikes, Ignoring Hands-Off Tradition Toward Fed

Trump MAGA hat

In a CNBC interview that aired earlier on Friday, Trump said he's "ready to go" with tariffs on $500 billion of Chinese goods, roughly the value of all USA imports from the Asian nation previous year.

CNBC said, "The Fed's independence from political interference has been a hallmark of its existence, so Trump's remarks have little precedent".

Trump told CNBC he's anxious the Fed's policies will cancel out his efforts to boost the economy.

On Thursday, the European Union said it was developing plans to hit back at the U.S. if it attempted to place import tariffs on cars, something Trump has repeatedly threatened to do.

Washington imposed tariffs on US$34 billion of Chinese products on July 6 and last week threatened to slap 10 per cent duties on another US$200 billion worth of the goods.

"It's proof, if it were needed, that the president is prepared to go all the way in the trade war to exact concessions from China, which simply can not match the United States firepower".

"I'm not thrilled", Trump told the network in an interview excerpt aired yesterday.

Fed has raised the benchmark lending rates twice this year, after three increases in 2017, and two more rate hikes are expected this year as the central bank removes stimulus from the economy to keep a lid on inflation.

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Prior to that, President Richard Nixon put pressure on more than one Fed chief to bend to his will on setting interest rates, which is why at least one watcher says the current squabble between the White House and the Fed is nothing new. I don't really - I am not happy about it. "I want them to do well", the USA president said of China.

The euro, yen and yuan gained against the US dollar right after the president took to social media on Friday morning, while the dollar index, which measures the USA currency against global currencies, was lately off 0.6 percent.

The comments raised eyebrows in the USA, where presidents are expected to avoid criticism of the central bank in deference to its independence. Bloomberg's headline says Trump "trespass [ed] on Fed's independence". In June, the nation's central bank raised rates for the seventh time since December 2015, in a move created to slowly cool the economy.

Around $505 billion of Chinese goods came into the United States in 2017, leading to a trade deficit of almost $376 billion, USA government data shows. "We do our work in a strictly nonpolitical way, based on detailed analysis, which we put on the record transparently".

"Now I'm just saying the same thing that I would have said as a private citizen", he said, according to CNBC.

During the 2016 presidential campaign, Trump was highly critical of the Fed and accused its policymakers of keeping rates at ultralow levels to favour Democrats.

While not only stirring debate, the comments also had an immediate effect on markets with the dollar basket erasing a rally posted earlier in the day.


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