Fed's Mester: I'm particularly focused on US consumers

Author: Adam Button | Category: Central Banks

Mester on CNBC:

  • US less exposed that Europe on trade and consumer goods
  • Are we slowing towards trend? Or something deeper?
  • I'm going to take next few weeks before FOMC to look at data
  • Weakness in business investment could spill over into hiring
  • I supported leaving rates the same at prior meeting
  • I haven't made up my mind about this meeting, I'm open minded
  • If economy continues where it is, I would probably say we should keep things where they are
  • Bond investors obviously have a more pessimistic view than most economists
  • Business contacts are always mentioning trade uncertainty, but they largely say demand is good
  • Wages have been moving up
  • It's normal that interest rates are higher than Europe and Japan
  • What happens abroad affects our economy but we have to be focused on the US
  • Right now my outlook is that we're in a good spot but we need to be attuned to risks
She repeatedly highlighted the consumer as a risk. Mester rarely shows her hand even though she's a hawk. I get the sense she can be tilted either way. In any case, she's not a voter now or in 2020.

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