CNBC News Releases

CNBC Exclusive: CNBC Excerpts: Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell Speaks with CNBC’s Steve Liesman on “Squawk on the Street”

WHEN: Today, Thursday, March 2nd

WHERE: CNBC's "Squawk on the Street"

Following are excerpts from the unofficial transcript of a CNBC EXCLUSIVE interview with Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell and CNBC's Steve Liesman on "Squawk on the Street" (M-F, 9AM-11AM ET) today, Thursday, March 2nd. Following are links to the interview on and

All references must be sourced to CNBC.


The economy has behaved pretty much as we expected. In the meantime, the balance of risks, which has been to the downside in recent years, has really shifted to being even and perhaps lifted to the upside because of the possibility and the likelihood of some fiscal action. So you put all that together, and I think the case for a rate increase in March has come together, and I do think it's on the table for discussion.


Momentum in the economy is solid. We've had two percent growth. At the beginning of this year, I think I was looking at two percent growth and continued progress in the labor market, inflation continuing to get back up to two percent. And I see us as broadly on that path. You really can't be too attentive to short term movements in GDP. We don't measure GDP particularly well in real time. So you've got to look at it in terms of quarters and halves and full years. And I do think we are right where we need to be.


For the last few years, we've really had significant global risks and weak growth abroad. And I think that the risks have diminished and actually growth in Europe is a little stronger. Inflation is a little higher. Same is true in Japan. So we see a slightly brighter picture abroad and I think that will help us.


There are probably pockets of slack existing in things like people working part time for economic reasons. They're probably people hanging around the edges of the labor market who are not counted as unemployed but who can come back in in a stronger market. So I think you look at the behavior of wages really to tell you how tight the labor market is. Wages are ticking up, but they're not ticking up a lot. It's quite a gradual thing. It suggests to me there's probably still some slack.


I wrote down three rate increases in the September summary of economic projections. That still feels about right to me. That's a gradual path by any historic measure. And it does feel to me that is about right, but it is really going to depend on what the economy does. Could be higher, could be lower.


The balance sheet tool was deployed when we are at the zero lower bound during the height of crisis and thereafter. And that's for extraordinary circumstances. So I'd really like to see us get well above zero, well into the normalization process, before we start shrinking the balance sheet because shrinking the balance sheet is a way of removing accommodation. So I'd like to be well away from that, and I would say that's going to take a little bit of time in my thinking. And then when we do go to shrinking the balance sheet, we can do it in a very predictable almost automatic way.


I have no concerns. I'm looking forward to meeting new colleagues and I look forward to meeting people. And I'm eager that there be a vice chair for supervision as soon as possible so I can begin to work with that person.

About CNBC:

With CNBC in the U.S., CNBC in Asia Pacific, CNBC in Europe, Middle East and Africa, and CNBC World, CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news and provides real-time financial market coverage and business information to approximately 381 million homes worldwide, including more than 94 million households in the United States and Canada. CNBC also provides daily business updates to 400 million households across China. The network's 15 live hours a day of business programming in North America (weekdays from 4:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET) is produced at CNBC's global headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and includes reports from CNBC News bureaus worldwide. CNBC at night features a mix of new reality programming, CNBC's highly successful series produced exclusively for CNBC and a number of distinctive in-house documentaries.

CNBC also has a vast portfolio of digital products which deliver real-time financial market news and information across a variety of platforms including:; CNBC PRO, the premium, integrated desktop/mobile service that provides live access to CNBC programming, exclusive video content and global market data and analysis; a suite of CNBC mobile products including the CNBC Apps for iOS, Android and Windows devices; and additional products such as the CNBC App for the Apple Watch and Apple TV.

Members of the media can receive more information about CNBC and its programming on the NBCUniversal Media Village Web site at

For more information about NBCUniversal, please visit