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Trump puts the Fed on blast in critical tweet ahead of policy meeting

Scott Gamm
U.S. President Donald Trump (L) and Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell at a nomination ceremony at the White House. (Xinhua/Yin Bogu via Getty Images)

President Trump continued his months long criticism of the Federal Reserve on Monday, two days before the Fed’s closely watched decision on interest rates. This time, he took to social media and dispatched his latest commentary to his 56 million followers on Twitter.

“It is incredible that with a very strong dollar and virtually no inflation, the outside world blowing up around us, Paris is burning and China way down, the Fed is even considering yet another interest rate hike,” Trump tweeted. “Take the Victory!”

The markets are pricing in a 78.4% chance of a rate hike announcement on Wednesday, according to CME futures data, when the Fed wraps up its last two day meeting of the year. Last week, the probabilities stood north of 80%.

Ever since its June meeting, the Fed telegraphed a fourth rate hike for 2018 was likely (the other three occurring in March, June and September of 2018).

However, the wave of stock market volatility in recent months has led some market commentators and President Trump to urge the Fed to hold off on hiking rates in December for fear of doing more harm than good for the economy.

President Trump’s observations about the U.S. dollar and inflation aren’t wrong. The U.S. Dollar Index is up 5.8% so far this year and the latest reading of the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge, the personal consumption expenditure price index, is up 1.8% year-over-year on a core basis as of October. That’s under the Fed’s inflation target is 2%. All of this suggests the Fed has room to keep monetary policy loose.

Scott Gamm is a reporter at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @ScottGamm.

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