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Trump Blames Federal Reserve For Sell-Off On Wall Street


President Donald Trump continued his attacks on the Federal Reserve's monetary policy following the step drop by stocks on Wednesday, blaming the central bank for the sell-off on Wall Street.

Trump bashed recent interest rate hikes in an interview with Fox News late Wednesday, accusing the Fed of "going wild."

"The problem that I have is with the Fed. The Fed is going wild," Trump said. "I mean, I don't know what their problem is but they are raising interest rates and it's ridiculous."

"The problem in my opinion is Treasuries and the Fed," he added. "The Fed is going loco and there is no reason for them to do it and I'm not happy about it."

The comments from Trump came after the S&P 500 saw its worst day since February, with analysts attributing the sell-off to concerns about rising treasury yields and the escalating trade war between the U.S. and China.

Trump doubled down on his criticism of the Fed in another interview with Fox News on Thursday, claiming the central bank is "making a big mistake" by being "so aggressive."

The Fed has described its pace of rate hikes as gradual, raising rates three times this year and forecasting another increase before the end of the year.

Past presidents largely refrained from publicly commenting on Fed policy, but Trump has repeatedly criticized the central bank.

"I like to see low interest rates," Trump told reporters on Tuesday as he prepared to depart for a campaign rally in Iowa. "The Fed is doing what they think is necessary, but I don't like what they're doing."

"I will say this: We're normalizing money, and that's good," he added. "But I think we don't have to go as fast."

Arguing that inflation has been held in check, Trump said he does not want to see Fed policy lead to a slowdown in recent economic growth.

"I don't want to slow it down even a little bit, especially when you don't have the problem of inflation. And you don't see that inflation going back," Trump said. "Now, at some point it will, and you go up. I just don't think it's necessary to go as fast."

Trump said he has not spoken to Fed Chairman Jerome Powell about his views on rates, claiming he likes to "stay uninvolved."

Top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow sought to downplay Trump's comments in an interview with CNBC on Thursday, denying the president is trying to exert influence over the Fed.

"The president has his own views, he's stated them many times, and there's nothing new here as far as I can tell," Kudlow said

"We know the Fed is independent. The president is not dictating policy to the Fed. He didn't say anything remotely like that," he added. "They are independent, and they're going to do what they're going to do."

(Photo: Michael Vadon)

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