U.S. President Joe Biden is set to meet Federal Reserve chief Jerome Powell on Tuesday as historic inflation continues to erode Americans’ pocketbooks.
The meeting, the first since Powell’s confirmation for a second term by the Senate, comes as Biden seeks to reduce the costs of gasoline, food and consumer goods, which have pushed inflation to 40-year highs.
Inflation is just one of many crises this White House faces, from gun violence to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Biden will congratulate Powell on his confirmation, discuss the U.S. and global economy and his priority of “tackling inflation to move from a historic economic recovery to steady, steady growth that works for working families,” an official said. White House.
The Fed has already raised interest rates by 3/4 percentage point this year and plans to raise them by another half percentage point at each of the next two meetings, with the possibility of more hikes afterward.
The Powell-led Fed has been criticized by some economists for being slow to tackle soaring inflation by ending emergency aid to the economy and beginning to raise rates.
In a Wall Street Journal op-ed published Monday, Biden said the Fed’s primary role is to control inflation.
Biden said his “predecessor demeaned the Fed and previous presidents tried to inappropriately influence its decisions during periods of high inflation. I won’t.”
US consumer price growth slowed sharply in April as gasoline prices moved away from their all-time highs, suggesting that inflation has likely peaked, although it is likely to stay hot for a while and the Fed keep its foot on the brakes to cool demand.
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