WASHINGTON ( Associated Press) – President Joe Biden will meet with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday as rising inflation takes a bite out of Americans’ pocketbooks.
Biden re-nominated Powell to head the central bank and the meeting will come weeks after the Senate confirmed him for a second term.
The White House said the pair would discuss the situation in the US and the global economy, and in particular inflation, which has been described as Biden’s “top economic priority”. The goal, the White House said, is “to transition from a historic economic recovery to steady, steady growth that works for working families.”
Inflation in the US hit a 40-year high earlier this year amid the global economy recovering from the pandemic and supply chain disruptions caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
But the economy saw a welcome bit of data on Friday, as the Commerce Department said inflation rose 6.3% in April from a year earlier, the first slowdown since November 2020 and a sign that higher prices may eventually ease, at least for now. For.
The inflation figure was below a four-decade high of 6.6% set in March. While high inflation is still causing hardships to lakhs of households, any reduction in prices, if persists, will provide some minor relief.
Powell has promised to continue keeping the Fed’s key short-term interest rate cool as long as inflation “is not coming down in a clear and concrete way.” Those rate hikes have sparked fears that the Fed, in its campaign to slow borrowing and spending, could push the economy into recession. This concern has led to a sharp fall in share prices over the past two months, although the market was up in the last week.
Powell has indicated that the Fed will likely raise its benchmark rate by half a point in both June and July — twice the size of a normal rate hike.