Fed Chair Says He Won't Resign If President Trump Asks Him To

Jerome Powell

Jerome Powell

"We will be prepared to adjust policy quickly and flexibly and to use all of our tools to support the economy should that be appropriate to keep the expansion on track", he said, adding "there is no pre-set path for policy".

Trump has slammed Powell for rate hikes, meant to keep the economy from overheating, and last month polled advisers about whether he could fire the Fed chief, according to multiple reports.

The Labour Department reported Friday that U.S. employers added a net 312,000 new positions in December, smashing economists' expectations.

The Federal Reserve, which has raised interest rates four times in 2018, is likely to push ahead with two more rate increases this year.

DXY's up move to the 96.60 region, or session highs, is now an ephemeral memory as a outcome of the dovish tone from Chief Powell's speech at the annual meeting of the American Economic Association. He also says that the Fed could alter its approach to trimming its huge balance sheet if it determines such a change is needed.

"We've been willing to revisit our views, very much willing to revisit our views, of what the natural rate is, and also our understanding of what it is", Powell said.




Trump has criticized the Fed chief for raising rates, and Bloomberg News reported December 21 that the president had discussed firing Powell.

Yellen, the Fed chair from 2014 to 2018 before Trump replaced her with Powell last February, said: "Obviously, the president has the right to comment on the Fed, but I would worry that if it continues or intensifies that it could undermine confidence in the Fed - and the market confidence in the Fed's judgment".

Asked at an economic conference in Atlanta if he would step down should Mr Trump request his resignation, Mr Powell said, "No".

Markets have gyrated in recent months and manufacturing gauges have slowed as weakening global growth and a trade spat between the US and China deepen uncertainty.

The Fed is also below its estimates of full employment. And the jobless rate rose from a five-decade low to 3.9 per cent, reflecting more people actively seeking work.

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