Tags: Evans | rate | inflation | Fed

Fed's Evans: It Will Be 'Quite Some Time Before It's Appropriate to Raise Rates'

By    |   Monday, 29 September 2014 10:07 AM

Debate rages in financial markets about when the Federal Reserve will begin raising interest rates.

Many economists expect the Fed to move around June 2015. That's a possibility, says Chicago Fed President Charles Evans. But he tells CNBC that if it was up to him, he'd wait longer.

"I think there will be quite some time before it's appropriate to raise rates. I think that if you look at the risks, we ought to balance those and be concerned that sometimes coming out of the zero lower bound is a really difficult proposition for economies," he states.

"So I'd like to be patient in any removal of accommodation and make sure that we're very confident the economy is strong and will continue to be strong."

The Fed has kept its federal funds rate target at a record low of zero to 0.25 percent since December 2008.

Evans isn't a voting member of the central bank's policymaking Federal Open Market Committee this year, but he will be next year.

Evans wants to make sure the economy is strong enough to withstand higher rates, even though GDP grew 4.6 percent in the second quarter.

He also thinks inflation should reach the Fed's 2 percent target before the central bank moves. The personal consumption expenditures price index, the Fed's favored inflation gauge, gained 1.5 percent in the 12 months through August.

"We need to make sure we got the fundamentals right in order to have strong growth so we can exit the zero-bound dilemmas. If we stay in this environment for an extended period of time, and then there were a downturn, we've used up all our best policy tools and it's a tough slog from here on out."

Meanwhile, Thomas Kee, CEO of Stock Traders Daily, says the Fed's massive easing program has sent both the stock and real estate markets into bubbles.

The S&P 500 has almost tripled from its March 2009 low, and the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index of has increased an average of 6.8 percent annually in the past three years.

"Is the stock market in a bubble?" Kee asks in a column for MarketWatch. "Yes, absolutely. It is not the only asset class that is in a bubble. Real estate is also in a bubble, and these prices have absolutely been influenced by [Fed] policy.

"The only way to avoid a crash is to continue to pump money into the system and support an economy that is, in every sense of the word, addicted to stimulus."

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Debate rages in financial markets about when the Federal Reserve will begin raising interest rates.
Evans, rate, inflation, Fed
Monday, 29 September 2014 10:07 AM
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