Economy Strongest in 4 Years? Ever?
It wouldn't be a day in the life of Donald Trump if he didn't tell you how great he is doing. You have to love his confidence. He said something to the extent that the economy is the best one ever. There is no denying that President Trump has done some great things. As with any President you get pros and cons and you get optics. What the optics are not telling you? The reality is that he inherited a train wreck from President Obama. It was an economy that was going in the wrong direction. That is not to say that we should point the finger at President Obama either. He inherited the after math of the financial crisis.
Then you have the headlines on CNBC this morning - BOOM! The Best Economy in 4 Years! Well, it doesn't take much to get better than 4 years ago. Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Between sensationalized reporting and politics the inconvenient truth can be swept under the rug.
The optics is that everything is great, everything is getting better, and there is nothing to worry about. CNBC's job is to promote the illusion that there is no risk in the world. After all they have an agenda as well. They are owned by GE a publicly traded company. IF everything is not good, it is not good for GE. It is this optical creation that creates risk in the world. IT lulls people to sleep and creates no motivation to assess risk. Then they wake up one day and ask.... What Happen? I thought everything was great?
Here is the inconvenient truth that I just can't get past. We are at historic low interest rates. It was a necessity to pull us out of the great recession. So the objective should be to get interest rates back up to a healthy level. The inconvenient truth is simply this.
IT IS UNHEALTHY AND RISKY TO KEEP INTEREST RATES AT HISTORIC LOWS. THE FEDERAL RESERVE BOARD SHOULD HAVE BEEN RAISING THEM YEARS AGO. THEY COULDN'T BECAUSE THE ECONOMY WAS WEAK. SO WHY THE HESITATION TODAY?
President Trump in an unprecedented move criticized the Fed for considering raising interest rates even though it is the smart thing to do. Why the hesitation? .......if the economy is so strong.
We should be able to absorb higher interest rates......if the economy is so strong.
Everyone including the Fed is fretting over raising interest rates. Why? ......if the economy is so strong.
Increasing interest rates don't sink a strong economy.
Sure raising rates could cause some short-term pain for the economy and the stock market. Yet, if the economy is strong and the future is bright, why not go ahead and get it done today while we can afford to?
I get why President Trump doesn't want to. Don't remove the punch bowl - keep the party going. He wants the best numbers possible for re-election. However, why is everyone else from politicians to analysts to the media fretting about it?
I think when it comes to interest rates that reality trumps the optics. The reality is that the financial crisis did a lot more damage then advertised. We still have a lot to overcome. By getting us healthy again you might mess up utopia. Optics doesn't make America Great Again. Only fixing reality will do the job for our country.
Bob Brooks is host of the Prudent Money Radio Show. If you have a question for him go to www.askbobbrooks.com. If you want to inquire about his financial advisement services, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org call 972-386-0384 and ask for Judy.