In an exclusive interview with FOX Business' Maria Bartiromo, Vice President Mike Pence defended President Trump’s criticism of the Federal Reserve Chair Jerome "Jay" Powell, saying that the president simply wants to be able to compete evenly against economically with other countries.
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“We certainly welcome a 25 basis points cut, but what the President has been calling for is a level playing field with our trading partners and competitors. Essentially the interest rates in Europe are zero today,” Pence said in the interview which will air on Thursday and Friday at 6 am ET on "Mornings with Maria" on FOX Business.
On Wednesday, the Fed cut its benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points, citing weakening exports and low inflation. The reduction, which lowered the federal funds rate to a range of 1.75 percent to 2 percent, was the central bank’s second in as many meetings. In July, the Fed lowered rates for the first time in more than a decade after hiking them nine times since December 2015.
A minute after Powell made the announcement Wednesday, Trump tweeted that the Fed chair had “no guts, no sense, no vision,” but Pence explained the president believes more can be done.
The vice president also pointed to a “track record” in this Federal Reserve.
“In our first two years the Federal Reserve raised interest rates seven different times and while we welcome the second rate cut this year, I think the President has been very clear, and frankly I think he's expressing patience of many Americans that want to see our monetary policies in this country supporting growth,” Pence added.