Is President Trump’s top economic advisor effectively admitting that the US economy is on the verge of a recession, if not in one already?
from Zero Hedge
Almost five years ago, in May 2014, when he was setting the scene for the biggest asset bubble trap in history – trap because his own policies made it impossible to undo the Fed’s monetary policies without bringing the entire financial system crashing down – Bernanke uttered what was very unwitting gallows humor, when he said that he does not expect the Fed’s interest rate to rise back to its 4% average during his lifetime.
In retrospect, he was right because just a few years later, with the Fed Funds rate at 2.50%, the Fed realized that any further hikes would crash the market, which was already on the verge of a bear market, and as a result Fed Chair Powell put the Fed’s rate hike strategy on hold.
Now, five years after Bernanke’s infamous statement, Trump’s top economic advisor Larry Kudlow has done Bernanke one better, and during an event in Washington, said that he does not think that rates will go up ever again, “maybe never again in my lifetime”, effectively admitting that the US economy is on the verge, if not in, a recession (either that, or giving a pretty dire prognosis of his own health).
Kudlow also said that Powell is doing a good job, despite disagreements. “I do. I know we’ve had some discussions about that in recent weeks.” Ah yes, it got to the point where Trump even had to call Powell, and while the full conversation shall remain a mystery, Trump told the Fed chair that he is “stuck” with him (for now).
Incidentally, besides Bernanke and Kudlow (and of course Gartman), another prominent economist making a vow for a thing that will not ever happen again in someone’s lieftime, was Janet Yellen who in June 2017 predicted that there would be no new financial crisis in her “lifetime.” And while Yellen is still alive, she must have been this close from death in December, when the global market was on the verge of crashing and only Powell’s last-ditch dovish relent prevented the former Chair’s death.