Trump advisor Navarro: 'The Fed is playing checkers in a chess world'

Ben Werschkul
DC Producer

Ahead of important meetings for central banks in both Europe and the United States, one of President Trump's top economic advisors unloaded on the Federal Reserve.

"The Fed is playing checkers in a chess world here as far as I am concerned,” Peter Navarro, the Director of the White House's Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, told Yahoo Finance’s Final Round (video above). "All I hear from the Fed is 'Oh, it's somehow trade tensions' — which we find ridiculous."

The Federal Reserve will next meet on Sept. 17-18 to consider a rate cut. Before that, the European Central Bank (ECB) will meet on September 12 and is expected to approve a range of stimulus measures to prop up the sagging European economy.

White House trade adviser Peter Navarro outside of the West Wing of the White House. REUTERS/Leah Millis

‘We need the Federal Reserve really to lower interest rates’

Navarro argued that the U.S. central bank should follow Europe’s lead by easing monetary conditions.

"We need the Federal Reserve really to lower interest rates," Navarro said. "I'm hoping they go 50 basis points [in September] and 100 by the end of the year."

He added that "whenever a central bank changes their interest rate policy, other central banks have to decide whether to match it” because "it's a form of monetary mercantilism against the United States."

Navarro’s broadsides came just hours after U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell stated that "the United States economy has continued to perform well." Speaking in Zurich. Powell added that the "most likely outlook for our economy remains a favorable one."

Navarro's rhetoric echoed President Trump, who tweeted on Friday: "Where did I find this guy Jerome?" The President nominated Powell to his post in 2017.

Ben is the D.C. producer for Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @benwerschkul.

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