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Prospective Trump Fed nominee Judy Shelton calls for a deeper rate cut later this month

Key Points
  • “Even a 50-basis point reduction would still keep the Fed funds rate well above zero,” Shelton tells The Washington Post in an email.
  • “I would have voted for a 50-basis point cut at the June meeting,” she adds.
  • Traders are pricing in a rate cut of 25 basis points, but Shelton argues that weaker overseas economic growth and lower central bank rates around the world justify the Fed cutting by 50 basis points.
Judy Shelton, U.S. executive director for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, smiles during a Bloomberg Television interview in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, May 29, 2019.
Andrew Harrer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

President Donald Trump's prospective nominee to the Federal Reserve, Judy Shelton, is calling for the Fed to lower interest rates by 50 basis points at its upcoming meeting on monetary policy.

"Even a 50-basis point reduction would still keep the Fed funds rate well above zero," Shelton told The Washington Post in an email. "I would have voted for a 50-basis point cut at the June meeting," she added.

The Fed is scheduled to meet on July 30-31, at which point the central bank is expected to lower rates. Market expectations for the Fed to lower interest rates by 25 basis points are at 77.5%, according to the CME Group's FedWatch tool. Expectations for a cut of 50 basis points are at 22.5%.

If the central bank lowers rates, it would do so at a time when weaker economic activity from overseas is dampening the outlook on the U.S. economy. Other central banks are also lowering or preparing to lower interest rates. These conditions, Shelton argued, are enough to justify a deeper cut in rates than the market is pricing in.

"I do think global conditions and the clear monetary paths being signaled by other central banks are a factor in considering how much our own Federal Reserve might choose to lower on July 31," Shelton told the Post.

This is not the first time Shelton has advocated for the prolonging of easy Fed monetary policy.

Earlier this month, she told CNBC's Rick Santelli that the Fed should not "pull the rug " from under the market. Shelton added that keeping the stock market strong is important to Americans and the Fed should not put the country at a disadvantage when other central banks are also keeping rates low.

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