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UBS' Art Cashin doesn't expect the Fed to raise interest rates at all next year

Key Points
  • Art Cashin says he doesn't expect the Fed to raise interest rates at all next year, doubling down on his 2019 prediction.
  • Cashin says he was surprised the Fed raised rates for the fourth time this year but added that Chairman Jerome Powell was compelled to follow through.
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Art Cashin: I don't think the Fed will raise rates in 2019

Closely followed trader Art Cashin told CNBC on Monday he doesn't expect the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at all next year, doubling down on his 2019 prediction.

The UBS director of floor operations at the New York Stock Exchange said he was surprised the central bank raised rates for the fourth time this year but added that Fed Chairman Jerome Powell was compelled to follow through. "I think they may be through" for 2019, Cashin added in a "Squawk on the Street " interview.

The Fed on Wednesday lowered its rate hike projection for 2019 from three to two. In a Friday interview following the Fed's decision, New York Fed President John Williams told CNBC the central bank was open to reconsidering its views on rate hikes next year, sending stocks briefly higher.

Cashin joined CNBC shortly before U.S. stocks dropped at Wall Street's open. Stocks are on pace for their worst year since 2008. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq last week saw their biggest weekly losses in more than 10 years, while the S&P 500 saw its worst since August 2011.

Cashin predicted last week to CNBC's Bob Pisani that the Fed may not hike in 2019 and there's an outside chance it may have to cut rates.

Previously, Cashin said Powell would be forced to raise rates this month due to public criticisms from President Donald Trump. At the time, Cashin said the amount of pushback on the Fed hike, including from Trump, was "borderline historical."

A report late Friday said Trump was considering firing Powell following the latest Fed rate decision.

But in a tweet Saturday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin quoted Trump as saying "I never suggested firing Chairman Jay Powell, nor do I believe I have the right to do so."

Cashin said Monday that stocks will have a hard time making gains due to too many "open ended" problems, including Trump and the Fed as well as the U.S. trade war with China.

Cashin began his career at Thomson McKinnon in 1959. In 1964, at age 23, he became a member of the NYSE and a partner in P.R. Herzig & Co.

WATCH: Cashin says Mnuchin call an 'odd call to make'

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Cashin: Mnuchin call an 'odd call to make'