Trump’s public attacks have ‘no effect’ on Fed policy, Rosengren says

Eric Rosengren, president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 8, 2018.

Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Donald Trump’s constant berating of the Federal Reserve and its actions does not influence the central bank’s decisions on monetary policy, Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren said Friday.

“It has no effect on how I think about monetary policy,” Rosengren told CNBC’s Sara Eisen. “And people are entitled to opinions. If we hear interesting and important facts that we haven’t thought about, we take that into consideration. And unless it’s data driven, it doesn’t have much of an influence on how I think about what we should be doing.”

Trump has criticized the Fed keeping interest rates at levels he thinks are too high. Earlier this month, he said the current level of Fed rates was “unnecessary,” adding that if the central bank would lower rates, “we’d be like a rocket ship.”

On Friday, he tweeted: “….Fed: There is almost no inflation!”

He also said in a July 19 tweet that: “Because of the faulty thought process we have going for us at the Federal Reserve, we pay much higher interest rates than countries that are no match for us economically. In other words, our interest costs are much higher than other countries, when they should be lower. Correct!”

But Rosengren said the tweets are not the subject of conversation in Fed meetings, noting: “I can’t recall them being mentioned at all.”

The Fed raised rates four times in 2018, the last of which contributed to a massive correction in December. Since then, the Fed has pivoted and has not hiked rates at all in 2019. In fact, the Fed is largely expected to cut rates by ate least 25 basis points later this month.

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