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Trump Fed: Draghi would be better than Powell, president says

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President Donald Trump suggested on Wednesday that he would prefer European Central Bank President Mario Draghi to lead the Federal Reserve, rather than his handpicked chairman, Jerome Powell.

Trump said in an interview on Fox Business that the US should have Draghi “instead of our Fed person,” praising its dovish stance toward monetary policy as the outlook for growth in the eurozone dims.

“What Europe did with Draghi is they’re forcing money in,” he said. “We’re doing the opposite. We’re taking money out and we’re raising interest rates. It’s insane.”

The ECB has sought to address signs of slowing in the bloc through stimulating policies such as reducing interest rates and purchasing assets. The Fed left interest rates steady last week and signaled an openness to future cuts, pointing to trade uncertainty against the backdrop of a slowing but still solid economy.

“He should have never raised the rates to the extent he did,” Trump said of Powell.

Read more: Trump has been putting pressure on his Fed chief for nearly a year — and it’s raising serious questions about how the central bank is supposed to function

Trump has turned up pressure on the Fed as his trade policies threaten to hurt the economy ahead of the 2020 elections. He has also pushed for a return to a crisis-era program called quantitative easing, which injected trillions of dollars into the economy.

Wednesday’s comments came just weeks after Trump attacked Draghi, accusing Europe of unfairly using its currency to compete in the world market. The president has increasingly complained about the strength of the dollar, which is influenced by higher interest rates and can make US exports relatively expensive abroad.

“Mario Draghi just announced more stimulus could come, which immediately dropped the Euro against the Dollar, making it unfairly easier for them to compete against the USA,” Trump wrote on Twitter this month. “They have been getting away with this for years, along with China and others.”

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