The Federal Reserve in Washington
The Federal Reserve in Washington. Reports on actual and expected inflation, both at the heart of Federal Reserve policymaking now, are also on traders’ radar. Image Credit: Reuters

Washington (Bloomberg): President Donald Trump stepped up his attacks on the Federal Reserve, demanding a “large cut” in interest rates as the US central bank prepares for a meeting at which it is expected to lower borrowing costs by a quarter point.

“I would like to see a large cut,” he told reporters on Tuesday at the White House, making one of his most direct public demands to date of the politically independent central bank and repeating a frequent call that it halt the gradual shrinking of its balance sheet.

“I would like to see immediately the quantitative tightening stop,” he said, adding the stock market and US growth would have been stronger if the central bank had not tightened policy in the past. “I’m just very disappointed in the Fed.”

Policymakers are expected to lower rates for the first time in more than a decade at their two-day meeting in Washington starting Tuesday. They’ve signalled they are open to a quarter-point cut to sustain the record US economic expansion amid headwinds from slowing global growth an uncertainty stemming from Trump’s trade policies.