Monday, November 7, 2016

The Only Thing That Could Delay a December Fed Rate Hike is a Trump Victory....

That's the take of Tim Duy, who is wired into Federal Reserve via member Lael Brainard. He also says a slowdown in hiring could do it.

He writes and quotes WSJ to make his point on Trump:
Conditions are moving in the right direction, but the Fed still waits for some "further" evidence. Continuation of recent trends is likely sufficient to be that "further" evidence needed to justify a rate hike in December. 
What would derail a December rate hike?  Greg Ip at the Wall Street Journal speculates that a Trump win in next week's election would do the trick:
...a Trump victory would probably cast enough of a pall over the outlook to give the Fed reason to delay its next rate increase into next year. Ironically,  Mr. Trump may discover that he, not Mr. Obama, is the reason the Fed hasn’t tightened.
Agreed, although this doesn't seem likely at this juncture. More likely to stay the Fed's hands would be a slowdown in hiring to something closer to 100k a month. That would probably end the downward pressure on the unemployment rate and raise questions about the Fed's basic forecast that the unemployment rate will continue to decline in the absence of additional rate hikes. We get two employment reports before the December meeting; for the Fed to stay on the sidelines yet again, we probably need to see both reports come in weak. 
This, by the way, is the opposite take of many free market Fed watchers who think the Fed might want to slam it to Trump and raise rates aggressively if he wins.

 -RW