St. Louis Fed president James Bullard wants to raise interest rates.
Bullard, who appeared on CNBC’s Squawk Box on Monday morning, said that he argued for raising rates at the Fed’s latest meeting last week. Bullard, however, is not a voting member of the Federal Open Market Committee, which votes on monetary policy decisions.
But in addition to outlining his case for a rate hike, Bullard also made an argument directly against Jim Cramer, CNBC’s biggest on-air personality and, you could argue, the face of financial media for many Americans.
Bullard said that Cramer has more or less been cheerleading the Fed to keep interest rates near 0% because it will help the stock market.
Calling this “unsavoury,” Bullard appeared clearly unhappy with Cramer’s commentary around the relationship between the Fed’s actions and Cramer’s commentary. Bullard said Cramer is one of the best around at breaking down the value of a company, but was clearly less than enthused about his more macro commentary.
“I have a message for your friend Cramer,” Bullard said. “The Fed cannot permanently raise stock prices. So, the idea that it’s all about the Fed going one way or the other and this is raising stock prices is not true… To have him cheerleading for low rates 24 hours per day is, I think, unsavoury.”
Unfortunately, the video here isn’t good quality, but these are certainly interesting comments coming from a Fed official towards a member of the media.
In his appearance on CNBC, Bullard basically outlined that the Fed is as close to its goals of full employment and price stability as its been in “50 or 60” years.
In a presentation on Saturday, Bullard included this chart which sums up his argument.
Cramer appears on CNBC at 9:00 am most mornings on “Squawk on the Street,” and so we’ll see if he mentions Bullard’s criticisms.
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