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Trump targets the Fed again, says it has 'made mistakes' during trip to US border

Brittany De Lea

President Trump is making no effort to pretend he is a “fan” of the Federal Reserve, its chairman or its policymaking decisions.

During a tour of a border wall site in San Diego on Wednesday, Trump responded to a question about the Fed’s decision to cut the federal funds rate by 25 basis points by saying he thinks the central bank has “made some mistakes.”

“I think that frankly they should’ve acted faster – they raised far too quickly and they lowered too soon,” Trump said. “You look at Japan and Germany where they’re actually getting paid money to loan money – they get paid to loan money … because of our Fed, we’re actually paying interest.”

Trump has pressured the Fed to cut rates to zero – or less. Negative interest rates are often a positive for borrowers.

The president added that he’s “not a fan,” though it was unclear whether he was referring to the Federal Reserve’s policy or its chair Jerome Powell, who Trump has been very critical of on Twitter and in public remarks.

In a tweet fired off earlier in the day, Trump claimed Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell had “no guts” and was a “terrible communicator.”

Despite the Fed’s alleged shortcomings, Trump noted the U.S. economy is “unbelievable” and that it has “no inflation.”

The Federal Reserve cited weakening exports and low inflation as the impetus behind its decision to cut its benchmark interest rate – which was lowered to a range of 1.75 percent to 2 percent.

In July, the Fed lowered rates for the first time in more than a decade.

Seven policymakers expect the central bank to cut rates one more time in 2019.


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