walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

Predicting the Fed

Mostly, people understand that this is really sort of a pointless activity. However, people engage in it anyway. I've been ignoring it all for, wow, years now, because the Fed has been super easy to predict: ain't gonna raise rates, can't lower them any further, and if you can work out what to do based on knowledge of quantitative easing and twisting, well, you are a lot more knowledgeable than I am.

Here are some people participating in the current round of nonsense:


"The Fed definitely seems to be gearing up for monetary tightening, even though inflation remains below target."

The balance of the post fails to mention that the current debate is about the language, which, if it parallels what happened in the 2003-2004 time frame, implies a significant delay (9 months). Krugman instead chooses to focus on the idea that there are asymmetrical risks for waiting too long vs raising rates too soon, and speculating about the Fed doing this to get some of the pressure off them. Economic policy as soap opera.

Two courtesy Calculated Risk:


Goldman expects a language change, but with core vs. headline inflation predictions mixed and that change likely to increase, liftoff guidance is where the attention will be.


Again, focus on the language, with inflation vs. employment numbers being noted (that is, employment is recovering, but with headline inflation dropping so fast from oil . . .) AND Krugman's complaint about asymmetric risk fully covered.

I do not understand why Blodget and Krugman see tightening. No one in the financial community is predicting tightening, at least not for another few quarters.

You could go out, get knocked up this weekend, and have the baby full term before we are likely to see a rise in rates. For reals. And if you have been paying attention to McBride's The Future's So Bright demographic analysis, that's not as irrelevant as it might seem.

Tags: our future economy today
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