FILE PHOTO: US President Donald Trump gestures with Jerome Powell, his nominee to become Governor of the US Central Bank of the White House in Washington, USA, November 2, 201
WASHINGTON ( Reuters) – US President Donald Trump strongly criticized Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell on Friday, saying he would not try to stop the top US central banker if he offered to resign.
Trump, who is leaving the White House to travel to the G7 Summit in France, told reporters, "I'm not happy with Jay Powell."
His comments continued a war of words against Powell which, along with retaliatory tariffs. imposed on American goods by China, helped trigger a sharp fall in the US stock market.
"I don't think he's doing a good job at all," Trump told reporters as he left the White House just before midnight Friday.
"I don't think he's much of a chess player, but I have him like that, you know, that's what I have," added the president, who previously questioned on Twitter who was "our bigger enemy," Powell or Chinese leader Xi Jinping.
Asked if he wanted Powell to step down, Trump replied: "Do I want him to retire? Let me put it this way, if he did, I wouldn't stop him. ”
Powell was in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, on Friday for a meeting with other central bankers. He said the Fed would "behave appropriately" to keep the US economy healthy in a deteriorating global economy, but did not stop committing to a series of interest rate cuts that Trump has sought.
Faced with growing risks to the economy, the Fed cut interest rates for the first time in more than a decade last month, and markets overwhelmingly expect the central bank to give a fresh cut in its September political review.
Reporting by Bryan Pietsch; Writing by David Alexander; Editing by Mohammad Zargham & Shri Navaratnam