Christmas could come early in 2017 for Janet Yellen and the Federal Reserve.
President-elect Donald Trump is coming down the chimney with lots of spending and tax cuts.
For years, the Fed has propped up the U.S. economy, while Congress and the White House fought and got little done in gridlock. Yellen, the Fed Chair, has prodded Congress to step up spending to boost the economy.
“Fiscal policy should play a role,” to stimulate growth, Yellen said in June. Translation: Help us out, Congress.
Now, Trump’s White House and a GOP-controlled Congress promise to pave the way for a big, fiscal stimulus package, taking the load off the Fed’s shoulders. Trump has promised to spend big on the nation’s infrastructure and cut taxes for everyone.
These moves will come at a time when the Fed is already starting take a back seat. In December of last year, the Fed raised its key interest rate for the first time in almost a decade. And two years ago, the Fed stopped buying U.S. bonds, which it had been doing since the financial crisis to help keep interest rates low and stimulate the economy.
The Trump era will represent a tectonic shift in the driving force behind the economy.
“We have shifted from a monetary policy world to a fiscal policy world,” says Joe Duran, CEO of United Capital, a financial advisory firm.