In his most vitriolic interview yet with regard the markets, President Trump, speaking to Reuters in an Oval Office interview, opened up about everything from The Fed’s hawkishness to China trade talks and European currency manipulation; as well as sanctions threats and deals with Turkey, Iran, and Russia.
Turkey – No Concessions
Trump, said he thought he had a deal with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan when he helped persuade Israel to free a detained Turkish citizen. He had thought Erdogan would then release pastor Andrew Brunson.
“I think it’s very sad what Turkey is doing. I think they’re making a terrible mistake. There will be no concessions,” he said.
“I’m not concerned at all. I’m not concerned. This is the proper thing to do,” he said, when asked about the potential damage to other economies.
“I like Turkey. I like the people of Turkey very much. Until now I had a very good relationship as you know with the president. I got along with him great. I had a very good relationship. But it can’t be a one-way street. It’s no longer a one-way street for the United States.”
Russia – Consider lifting sanctions
President Trump told Reuters that he would consider lifting sanctions on Russia if it were to take steps to work with U.S. on issues like Syria and Ukraine.
The Fed – “not thrilled” at rate-hikes
Then Trump doubled-down (to the establishment’s horror) on the fact that he was “not thrilled” with The Fed hiking rates imploring that Jay Powell should “do what’s good for the country,” (which is presumably keep rates low and extend all asset bubbles)…
Trump believes the U.S. central bank should be more accommodating.
“I’m not thrilled with his raising of interest rates, no. I’m not thrilled,” Trump said in the interview.
“I should be given some help by The Fed.”
Additionally, Trump said that while he believes in Fed independence, he would continue to criticize The Fed if it continues to raise rates.
Currency Manipulation – China & EU
Trump also accused China and Europe of manipulating their respective currencies.
“When US puts tariffs on China, China artificially lowers the price of the yuan.”
“China is manipulating its currency, Europeans are manipulating the euro too…”
The Dollar index fell to session lows following the headlines…
Trade Talks – Not much hope
Trump said that he does not anticipate much progress coming from the US-China trade talks, and confirmed there was “no timeframe” for ending the China trade dispute.
Social Media – Censorship “very dangerous”
And finally Trump commented on the social media censorship occurring:
It is “very dangerous” when companies like Twitter and Facebook self-regulate content on their platforms.
Major social media firms have for months been answering to claims of conservative censorship. Trump last month called Twitter “discriminatory” and accused the company of “shadow banning” prominent Republicans
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Additionally, as the headlines hit, The White House (not President Trump) tweeted the following…“My pledge to each and every one of you is that my Administration will not rest until you have the resources, the tools, and the authorities you need to do your job and do it properly and do it strong.”
.@realDonaldTrump: “My pledge to each and every one of you is that my Administration will not rest until you have the resources, the tools, and the authorities you need to do your job and do it properly and do it strong.” pic.twitter.com/EDMmxB5b7X
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) August 20, 2018