President Donald Trump told The Washington Post on Tuesday that he’s “not even a little bit happy” with his appointment Jerome Powell as chair of the Federal Reserve.
Trump told the Post, “So far, I’m not even a little bit happy with my selection of Jay,” who he appointed earlier this year. The president told the newspaper that he thinks the U.S. central bank is “way off-base with what they’re doing.”
The Federal Reserve has been raising interest rates as the U.S. economy picks up, but the Post reported that Trump argued these rate hikes were hurting the U.S. economy. The Post also said he blamed the Fed for the recent stock market sell-off and General Motors’ plans to close plants and cut more than 14,000 jobs.
“I’m doing deals and I’m not being accommodated by the Fed,” Trump told the Post. “They’re making a mistake because I have a gut and my gut tells me more sometimes than anybody else’s brain can ever tell me.”
The president has previously criticized the Federal Reserve, saying they should do “what’s good for the country.” He’s also said he’s “not thrilled” with Powell for continuing to raise interest rates.
Although Powell has become a repeated target of Trump’s ire, it is historically unusual for presidents to openly criticize the head of the Federal Reserve. His comments have drawn concern from those who have interpreted the president’s remarks as threats to the central bank’s independence.
Trump’s comments to the Post come a day before Powell’s highly anticipated comments at the Economic Club of New York on Wednesday. The Fed chair is unlikely to signal any significant changes to the central bank’s existing rate hike projections. The market generally expects the Federal Open Market Committee to raise its benchmark interest rate in its December meeting.