Fed Betting Farm on Transitory Inflation

"For the Fed to be talking about how inflation is transitory while the Fed continues to throw gasoline on the inflationary fire, on what basis would it have to claim all of this is transitory?"

Image Credits: Tom Williams / Contributor / Getty.

After hotter than expected CPI data came out for the sixth time this year, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell spent two days on Capitol Hill trying to convince everybody that there’s no problem.

As Peter Schiff put in in a recent podcast, the Fed is betting the farm on “transitory” inflation. It’s really got no other choice.

Powell made every effort to sound reassuring and let everybody know there was nothing to worry about during his two days of congressional testimony.

“And he did it with a straight face, which was not an easy task considering the BS that he was required to constantly put out in order to put lipstick on this pig of an economy. And not even so much the economy that’s the pig, but the monetary policy that Powell himself has been administering.”

Powell continued to peddle the “transitory” inflation narrative. Peter said Powell and others have the transitory period wrong.

“What was transitory is not the high inflation that we’re experiencing now. What was transitory is all the low inflation we experienced in the past — especially the low inflation that we enjoyed since the 2008 financial crisis. That’s what was transitory. What’s happening now is we’re transitioning back to the reality. We’re actually catching up to all the inflation that we should have been held accountable for back then, only now we’re starting to feel the impact.”

We’re in a transition from low inflation to high inflation and it’s about to get a lot worse.

Meanwhile, the Fed added another $103.9 billion to its balance sheet in the most recent week for which we have data. That pushed the balance sheet to a new record of $8.202 trillion.

“For the Fed to be talking about how inflation is transitory while the Fed continues to throw gasoline on the inflationary fire, on what basis would it have to claim all of this is transitory?”

On the other side of the equation, the US government continues to run massive deficits month after month. And there is no end in sight to the spending.

“We have huge pieces of legislation on deck for the government to spend trillions and trillions of dollars that it has no intention of collecting in taxes and is completely relying on the Federal Reserve to print all the money, which means the inflation fire that Powell claims is going to go out by itself because it’s all transitory is about to get much, much bigger because he’s throwing all this gasoline on it.”

During Powell’s appearance before Congress, Republicans constantly brought up inflation and blamed it on Biden’s spending. That’s certainly one aspect of the problem. But Republicans ignore all of the borrowing and spending that went on throughout the entire Trump administration. And they also ignore the fact that the government can’t borrow and spend to this degree without the central bank.

“They forget it takes two to tango. Biden can’t spend the money that the Fed doesn’t print. If the Federal Reserve acted responsibly and refused to monetize all these deficits, then the deficits wouldn’t be there.”

And yet, Republicans on both the House and Senate committees praised Powell and the Fed for the great job they’ve done. This is more than a little convoluted.

“Because the Fed has not acted as an independent agency interested in preserving the integrity of our money and pursuing a mandated price stability, because it is a puppet of whatever administration happens to be in power and it’s not really independent, well, that’s the reason that Biden was able to get away with these deficits. In fact, that’s the reason that Trump was able to get away whit his deficits, which is the hypocrisy of this whole thing.”

Peter said both parties are to blame, but the real culprit is the Fed.

In his prepared remarks, Powell talked up the economy. But then he insisted it was too early to withdraw any of the monetary support. It’s not even time to slow asset purchases.

‘So, it’s not that this great economy still needs stimulus. It still needs every bit as much stimulus as it needed before it was great. When we were in the depths of the COVID recession, we have to have that much stimulus now. Even though the economy is supposedly so much better, we can’t even dare reduce the amount of stimulus. He’s not even talking about taking away the stimulus. We just can’t even have less stimulus than the stimulus we have now.”

The real issue is the Fed can’t fight inflation without collapsing the entire economy.

“We’re going to have to collapse the bubble that was inflated not just now with Biden, but that Donald Trump helped inflate. And of course Barack Obama. But then George Bush before him. Nobody wants to hear the truth. Powell doesn’t want to speak the truth. And none of the congressmen or senators really wants to hear the truth. So, Powell keeps on lying and then you’ve got a bunch of people in Congress who pretend to believe him.”

Peter goes on to break down some of the specific things Powell said during his two days on Capitol Hill.



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