President Trump on Saturday said that that US dollar is too strong, before knocking Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who "likes raising interest rates."
Speaking from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) for more than Two hours, Trump said: "I want a dollar that does great for our country, but not a dollar that’s so strong that it makes it prohibitive for us to do business with other nations and take their business." Trump then knocked Powell - who he did not mention by name, instead referring to him as "a gentleman that likes raising interest rates in the Fed, we have a gentleman that loves quantitative tightening in the Fed, we have a gentlemen that likes a very strong dollar in the Fed."
"Can you imagine if we left interest rates where they were, if we didn’t do quantitative tightening," said Trump, adding "There’s no inflation."
TRUMP: "We have a gentleman that likes raising interest rates in the Fed. We have a gentleman that loves quantitative tightening in the Fed. We have a gentleman that likes a strong dollar in the Fed."— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 2, 2019
(The crowd doesn't know how to react to this and sits silently.) pic.twitter.com/KbwzqCjMPV
As Bloomberg reports, the Fed kept their target range for the federal fund rate steady at 2.25 to 2.5 percent. Economists and investors largely expect they will stay this course during their next gathering in Washington March 19-20.
Powell this week repeated the Fed’s recent mantra of being “patient” on future rate moves. Trump in late 2018 repeatedly castigated Powell and the central bank for the series of rate increases made from record low levels achieved during the severe recession a decade ago. -Bloomberg
Trump has traded barbs with the Fed, and has reportedly considered firing Powell several times.
In December, Trump tweeted "The only problem our economy has is the Fed," adding "They don’t have a feel for the Market, they don’t understand necessary Trade Wars or Strong Dollars or even Democrat Shutdowns over Borders."
The only problem our economy has is the Fed. They don’t have a feel for the Market, they don’t understand necessary Trade Wars or Strong Dollars or even Democrat Shutdowns over Borders. The Fed is like a powerful golfer who can’t score because he has no touch - he can’t putt!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 24, 2018