Economist's Insights

Fedspeakers Out and About

Jun 26, 2018

Bostic Bets Trade War will be Painful: Atlanta Fed President Bostic (2018 voter) said Tuesday that the Fed is attempting to keep the U.S. economy on a stable and sustainable path and wants to avoid the build-up of some excesses that have caused problems in past decades. However, the Fed’s task is being made more difficult because of the uncertainty that has surfaced around global trade. He added that it’s too soon to pick a winner that but the disruption of a trade war would be “painful” for the U.S. economy.

Kaplan Sees Fiscal Boost Fading, Says Fight China Not Friends: Dallas Fed President Kaplan (2020 voter) said he estimates the economy will grow around 2.8% in 2018 but that the pace will ease up once the effects of fiscal stimulus fades. He also spoke on trade, saying “lets fight what I think is actually a really big threat, which is the relationship with China. But I think we’d be much more potent in fighting that battle if we weren’t fighting five other battles with our friends.”

Barkin Says Tax-Cut Effects Uncertain, Participation Trends Keeping Wages In-Check: In a one-pager published on the Richmond Fed’s website yesterday, recently appointed President Barkin (2018 voter) briefly discussed possible effects of the tax cuts passed at the end of last year before noting that “Given these many uncertainties, the Federal Open Market Committee has been cautious when assessing the future impacts of the recent tax legislation.” He also spent a paragraph on labor participation trends and why they could keep wage growth in check. His narrative included links to several research pieces on each topic.