US Deputy Treasury Secretary Says Cheap Oil Like $200 Billion Stimulus

The U.S. economy is “gathering strength” and plummeting oil prices are actually a “big plus” for Americans, former Deputy Treasury Secretary Roger Altman told CNBC on Tuesday.
While acknowledging disruptions in oil states, he said the collapse in crude is equivalent to $200 billion stimulus package.

“We’re going to have good [economic] growth this year. And we’re going to have a good rate of job creation. I think we will see some wage growth,” Altman said, despite the December employment report showing a 5 cent drop in average hourly earnings—pulling the annualized gain down to 1.7 percent.

While workers are waiting for wages to rise, he said overall costs for health care are leveling out in response to Obamacare. “The remarkable fall in health care cost inflation reflects the degree to which, among other things, providers made a lot of changes in anticipation of adjusting to [Obamacare], which have really affected costs,” the former Clinton administration official said on “Squawk Box.”

“I think Obamacare for all its controversy is actually working,” said Altman, the founder of investment banking advisory firm Evercore Partners. He said the expected Supreme Court decision this summer on federal health insurance subsidies will be “the biggest event of this year” in Washington.

As for the 2016 presidential election, he said he thinks Wall Street would do well with either Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Jeb Bush in the White House.

via CNBC

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza