CFE Analysis | Fed

What the next Fed chair will do

Back in normal times, the following question would have seemed peculiar: Which Fed chair candidate would choose highly accommodative policy if a large fiscal stimulus hits an economy in which the unemployment rate is already at historic lows? The question becomes stranger when we add that the Republicans in power might prefer that Chair. What […]

CFE Analysis | Fed

Yellen for Fed Chair?

I received several comments regarding the post on Jay Powell, asking whether I was implicitly stating a preference for Powell over Janet Yellen. Nope. I clearly should have been less obtuse, but I meant only to be commenting on Powell, who had become a strong favorite according to the betting pundits. The Powell piece started […]

CFE Analysis | Fed

Powell for Fed chair?

According to the folks who bet on such things, Jerome (Jay) Powell is a heavy favorite to become the next Fed chair. I have no special insights into the likely pick, but I do have a pretty good sense of Powell. I was working as a special advisor to the Fed governors when Powell arrived […]

CFE Analysis

How about we settle for a well-run government?

Classroom duties this Spring were spiced up a bit by the steady flow of teachable moments coming from Washington. For economists, one juicy tidbit came when we read that Jared Kushner had been put in charge of an effort to make government run like a business. A final exam question practically writes itself: What does […]

CFE Analysis | Fed

What will the Fed Do? June 2017 edition.

We’ve been reviewing those ‘5 things to watch for’ pieces that often precede FOMC meetings. Our conclusion is that even a Fed groupy is unlikely to find 5 notable things happening at any given FOMC. This is as it should be in an age of transparency. We’re trying a different approach. We’ll try to distill […]

CFE Analysis | Fed

Q&A about Fed portfolio normalization

The best way to predict how the FOMC will react to evolving economic conditions, we at the CFE have been arguing, is to listen almost exclusively to communication on behalf of the consensus, and then to, as best as possible, take that communication at face value. As we’ve documented, this approach has had an excellent […]

CFE Analysis | Fed

What will the Fed do? March 2017 edition

After the December FOMC, I posted that I was sticking with a baseline, near-term-rosy Trump outlook, in which a robust economy is greeted by a Fed happily rising rates three or more times. Then as now, I had no great confidence that the rosy scenario would continue to unfold, but forecasting 3 or more rate […]

CFE Analysis | Macro

Populist policies cause immediate misery. Or not.

As a professional economist, I am quite certain that most readers of this blog could cancel their insurance policies and spend the savings on a pleasant party. And with any luck, the good times could go on for, as the Fed would say, a considerable period. The Wall Street Journal, a few weeks back, described […]