Warren Buffett calls Fed Chair Jerome Powell right man for the job

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To recap the events from Wednesday, Federal Reserve policymakers voted to hold interest rates unchanged, citing a lack of inflation pressure.

"We think our policy stance is appropriate at the moment", Fed chairman Jerome Powell said in a press conference, after the central bank ended its two-day policy meeting.

"The labor market remains strong. economic activity rose at a solid rate" in recent weeks, the Fed said in a policy statement a day after President Donald Trump called on it to cut rates by a full percentage point and take other steps to stimulate the economy.

The Fed now has an empty seat on its board, and Trump wants to nominate Stephen Moore, a political commentator who has been criticized in recent weeks for some of his past misogynistic statements about women, to fill it.

Yet despite these signs of strength, President Trump has continued to express ire with the Fed's stewardship of the USA economy.

Stephen Moore, the economics and politics commentator, issued a statement through a public relations firm that noted support from Jeremy Siegel, a finance professor at the University of Pennsylvania who was interviewed on CNBC.

"He did not sound like a man in a hurry to lower interest rates, " said Carl Tannenbaum, chief economist at Northern Trust Corp. The Fed has suffered a barrage of attacks from Trump and others in his administration demanding Powell cut rates.

Powell told reporters the decline in so-called core inflation was likely mostly due to transient factors, and he predicted it would rise back to the 2 percent target.

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Overall, he said, "I see us on a good path for this year".

Powell will announce the decision Wednesday and economists and investors will look for any hint in the statement of how central bankers are feeling about the economy and what their next move might be: a hike or a cut. Labor market conditions, inflation indicators, in addition to readings on financial and worldwide developments were underscored as areas that the Fed will continue to monitor closely.

The Fed also announced a five basis point (0.05 percent) reduction in the interest rate on excess reserves (IOER rate) from the current 2.4 percent to 2.35 percent.

Fed fears over low inflation had been mounting, with Powell recently calling it "one of the major challenges of our time".

The most recent data showed a measure of underlying inflation running at 1.6 percent, which would be a problem if it meant households and businesses had doubts about the economy's strength and were less willing to spend and invest.

The Fed raised interest rates four times in 2018 and nine times since December 2015.

Powell said that economic risks around the world have eased, with the improvement in recent data from China and Europe. The Fed said it took to move to help keep rates within the target range.

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