Monday, January 21, 2008

50 now and hints at Intermeeting Cut

I'll put up a more definitive rate preference and statement later, but right now I lean towards:

1) Cutting 50 bps on the 30th

2) Saying something like "The Committee is monitoring the data closely and is prepared to act promptly to increasing signs of deterioration in growth and employment"

A growing risk is now generalized, rather than simply asset, deflation. It is quite a difficult time for central bankers, when both inflation and deflation are credible risks.

This makes language crucial in communicating to the markets. In particular, participants need to know what the key data measures are so they can update their expectations. In particular I would point the markets towards unemployment and agricultural prices. Although these may not be leading indicators they are quite solid indicators of where the pressures are and we can feel more confident in taking large actions based upon them.

In particular if Ag prices fall I don't see how general inflation holds up in this environment. Not that Ag prices are pushing general inflation but they indicate a worldwide slowdown in demand growth.

12 comments:

Mike said...

Given the big drop in the TSX, Europe and Asia, are we more likely to see an intermeeting cut? And will it do any good at this point?

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