Trump says Fed's Powell 'let us down' after modest interest rate cut

President Trump said on Wednesday that Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell “let us down” after the U.S. central bank voted to modestly lower the benchmark federal funds rate by 25 basis points.

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“What the Market wanted to hear from Jay Powell and the Federal Reserve was that this was the beginning of a lengthy and aggressive rate-cutting cycle,” Trump said in a tweet. “As usual, Powell let us down, but at least he is ending quantitative tightening, which shouldn’t have started in the first place - no inflation. We are winning anyway, but I am certainly not getting much help from the Federal Reserve!”

During its two-day meeting, the Federal Open Market Committee voted, as expected, to ease interest rates by 25 basis points to a range between 2 percent and 2.25 percent. The U.S. central bank cited "the implications of global developments in the economic outlook as well as muted inflation pressures” in approving the cut.

Although Powell did not rule out the possibility of another rate cut this year -- depending on the outcome of lingering uncertainties, like the U.S.-China trade war and softening global growth -- he stressed that it was not the start of a rate-cutting cycle. Currently, traders are pricing in no chance of a rate cut in the upcoming meeting, although 43.5 percent believe there could be a rate hike.

“It’s not the beginning of a long series of rate cuts. I didn’t say it was just one, or anything like that,” he told reporters. “You would [aggressively cut rates] if you saw real economic weakness ... That’s not what we’re seeing.”

Ahead of the Fed's meeting, however, Trump -- a frequent critic of both Powell and the Fed -- called on policymakers to make a "large" rate cut, claiming the stock market would be "10,000 points higher" if the Fed hadn't raised rates in December.

“I would like to see a large cut, and I would like to see immediately the quantitative tightening stop,” he told reporters outside of the White House on Tuesday.

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