The Fed’s Latest Lie: It Can Make Everything Go Back to Normal
The Fed Emperor’s New Clothes Show is a continuous comedy without laughter. The latest act, the virtual Jackson Hole conference (August 27), was dreadful.
The show’s audiences are accustomed to the Fed chair and his board delivering solemn pronouncements about their aims—low inflation, high employment, and financial stability. These officials play their parts according to script. They never explain how they will fulfill their promise—it is all boast and no substance. The assembled courtiers, including the financial media representatives who form part of the Fed’s propaganda machine, never ask difficult questions. Those inclined toward skepticism fear exposing their own lack of knowledge or losing their jobs.
In the just finished Jackson Hole episode, Chief Powell revealed that the Fed is now to target an average 2 percent inflation over the medium and long run, meaning that it will “steer” inflation above that level as needed to compensate for periods when it has languished below. Yet in the contemporary monetary system without anchor, there is no high-powered money aggregate whose growth firmly sets boundaries to the long-run path of goods and services prices. Instead, the Fed seeks to achieve its target by employing the blunt and highly imprecise instruments of interest rate manipulation, while counting on inertia of inflation and inflation expectations. That is always a recipe for huge economic and financial instability.
The essence of the policy framework review, just unveiled by Chief Powell, is that the Fed will be slower than in recent cycles to adapt that blunt instrument to any incipient buildup of monetary inflation symptoms in goods and services markets. Accordingly, the danger of an inflation breakout at some point in the future has increased. An extended deep recession through the present pandemic and beyond would delay that point.
Speculation on this Fed policy adjustment
Article from Mises Wire