Trump criticises Federal Reserve interest rate rises – dollar falls
Friday, 20 July 2018 US PresidentDonald Trump said last night he was “not thrilled” about the idea of interest rate rises in the US, causing an immediate fall in the value of the dollar.
Speaking to CNBC Trump broke with the convention that presidents do not criticise the policy of the Federal Reserve or directly comment on the dollar.
“I’m not thrilled,” he said. “Because we go up and every time you go up they want to raise rates again ... I am not happy about it. But at the same time I’m letting them do what they feel is best.”
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“I don’t like all of this work that we’re putting into the economy and then I see rates going up,” he said.
Trump said he was concerned that the “Chinese currency was dropping like a rock” and the strong US dollar “puts us at a disadvantage.”
The dollar fell immediately after Trump’s comments but recovered most of its ground by the end of its session.
Kit Juckes, chief foreign exchange strategist at Societe Generale, said Trump: “Set more cats among even more pigeons with his comments about rates and the dollar yesterday, but apart from appalled gasps at the thought of interference with monetary policy, I’m not sure this intervention will have much lasting impact.”
Trump said he was not worried about breaking convention by expressing his views on monetary policy.
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“Now I’m just saying the same thing that I would have said as a private citizen,” Trump said. “So somebody would say, ‘Oh, maybe you shouldn’t say that as president.’ I couldn’t care less what they say because my views haven’t changed.”
China’s currency the yuan fell to a one-year low against the dollar today, igniting worries it could be a new weapon in the trade conflict with the US.
Juckes said: “Whether or not China is wittingly undertaking a depreciation policy, the question will increasingly be on investors' minds as the slide deepens.”
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