Toeing the line Toeing the line\images\insights\article\georgia-downtown-small.jpg May 10 2024 May 13 2024

Toeing the line

Weekly Cash Commentary

Published May 13 2024

It’s been a long time since a Federal Reserve policymaker dissented from a monetary policy decision, and it doesn’t look like one will anytime soon. This would seem to be the perfect time for members of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) to offer different opinions. Policy seems to be on the razor’s edge following several reports showing inflation has, at the very least, paused on the way down from its multi-decade highs of 2022 or, at the very worst, is reaccelerating. 

Yet, in a parade of appearances last week, regional Fed presidents and other governors were largely on the same page. They echoed the statement released by May FOMC meeting: “In recent months, there has been a lack of further progress toward the Committee's 2% inflation objective.” Chair Jerome Powell followed this by saying the Fed still lacks the “confidence” that inflation is falling, pointing to persistently high readings of CPI and PCE.

New York Fed president, John Williams, kicked things off by saying, “we still have a ways to go on the journey to sustained 2% inflation." Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari said rates will have to sit in the current range for “an extended period,” and didn’t rule out another hike. San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly said it may take “more time” for inflation to decline. There was no hint of straying from Powell’s outlook.

More Fed officials will have the opportunity to weigh in this week with another busy schedule of speeches. It’s likely they, too, will toe the line.

Tags Markets/Economy . Liquidity .

Views are as of the date above and are subject to change based on market conditions and other factors. These views should not be construed as a recommendation for any specific security or sector.

Consumer Price Index (CPI): A measure of inflation at the retail level.

Personal Consumption Expenditures Price Index (PCE): A measure of inflation at the consumer level.

Issued and approved by Federated Investment Counseling