On Sunday, March 11, 2019, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell was interviewed by Scott Pelley on 60 Minutes. We thought it would be helpful to cite a few sections of their conversation and provide you with prior articles in which we addressed the topics discussed.
We have been outspoken about the role of the Fed, their mission and policy actions over the last ten years. We are quick to point out flaws in Fed policy for a couple of reasons. First, is simply due to the enormous effect that Fed policy actions and words have on the markets. Second, many in the media seem to regurgitate the Fed’s actions and words without providing much context or critique of them. The combination of the Fed’s power over the market coupled with poor media analysis of their words and actions might expose investors to improper conclusions and therefore sub-optimal investment decision-making.
With that, we review various parts of the 60 Minutes interview and offer links to prior articles to help provide alternative views and insight as well as a more thorough context of Chairman Powell’s answers.
Can the Fed Chairman be fired?
PELLEY: Do you listen to the president?
POWELL: I don’t comment on the president or any elected official.
PELLEY: Can the president fire you?
POWELL: Well, the law is clear that I have a four-year term. And I fully intend to serve it.
PELLEY: So no, in your view?
Our Take: Yes, the Federal Reserve Act which governs the Fed makes it clear that he can be fired “for cause.”- Chairman Powell You’re Fired
Does the Fed play a role in driving the growing income and wealth inequality gaps?
PELLEY: According to federal statistics, the upper half of the American people take home 90% of income, leaving about 10% for the lower half of Americans. Where are we headed in this country in terms of income disparity?