On Saturday, a panel on MSNBC's "Up with David Gura," weighed in on President Donald Trump's latest attempts to strong-arm Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell into squeezing interest rates — and the real reason he might be so obsessed with this issue.
"There is a case for the fed to lower interest rates or take back that rate hike from December," said CNBC analyst Ron Insana. "What the president is suggesting, and now one of his nominees is suggesting, is that rates should be back at zero. That's for extreme duress. That's what we saw in the great financial crisis, as you know, in 2008 and 2009. There is no reason to get aggressive about pushing interest rates lower, and this morning, last night, the president said that the Fed is the biggest problem facing the U.S. economy. That is just utterly absurd. The Fed has been extraordinarily responsible."
"What I worry about most, David, is the president packing the Fed with sycophants and ideologues who are going to do his bidding," he added.
"It's him saying, you know what? I know that in my sector of the economy, low rates are extremely good. That's the way he sees the world," said Sunday Civics host L. Joy Williams.
"That's real estate," agreed Gura.
"I think when he talks about the economy ... he's not talking about it in terms of the average person or the average household," said Williams. "He's talking about people that he knows, real estate folks, big corporations. When he's talking about preserving jobs, he's talking about keeping companies or corporations here that would be so benevolent that they would give you a job. So that is how he sees the economy, and not necessarily on the skills gap or the squeeze that others are feeling."
"And let us understand one salient point," added Insana. "The Trump Organization itself has $340 million in adjustable rate debt, and if rates go up, that will hurt them as well."