WASHINGTON–Steve Moore, chief economist at FreedomWorks, issued a stern warning Monday that recent bank collapses may be “just the tip of the iceberg” of Biden’s failed economic policies.
In an appearance on Fox News, Moore told Harris Faulkner that the Biden administration’s spending caused the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates, leading to financial problems for many major banks.
“I agree with the president that we don’t have an overall banking crisis. The system is sound, but I do think you have a lot of major banks that are in some trouble. And SVB, the Silicon Valley Bank, may just be the tip of the iceberg here,” Trump’s former White House adviser said of the current economic situation. “And I think it’s important for people to understand how this potential banking crisis happened. It’s not because there aren’t enough bank regulators, as Biden is trying to say. It’s because of the massive inflation and the trillions and trillions of dollars of borrowing that the federal government has done that has put our financial system in great jeopardy and great peril.”
“You can’t just keep doing this month after month, year after year, borrowing trillions and trillions of dollars. And so what happened, because of the Biden spending and debt policies, is that not only did inflation go up, but interest rates have gone up,” Moore added. “Harris, as you know, the Fed has had to raise interest rates eight or nine times, and they’re talking about more interest rate increases to come. And that’s caused a lot of financial problems for these big banks is the interest rates go up.”
Biden responded Monday to the economic crisis, stating that Americans can “feel confident” in their banking system after his administration’s response to the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank (SVB) and Signature Bank last week.
“No losses will be borne by the taxpayers,” Biden said. “Instead, the money will come from the fees that banks pay into the deposit insurance fund. Because of the actions that our regulators have already taken, every American should feel confident that their deposits will be there if and when they need them.”
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Federal Reserve reinforced its inflation fight Wednesday by raising its key interest rate for the seventh time this year and signaling more hikes to come. But it announced a smaller hike than it had in its past four meetings at a time when inflation is showing signs of easing.
The Fed made clear, in a statement and a news conference by Chair Jerome Powell, that it thinks sharply higher rates are still needed to fully tame the worst inflation bout to strike the economy in four decades.
The central bank boosted its benchmark rate a half-point to a range of 4.25% to 4.5%, its highest level in 15 years. Though lower than its previous three-quarter-point hikes, the latest move will further increase the costs of many consumer and business loans and the risk of a recession.
More surprisingly, the policymakers forecast that their key short-term rate will reach a range of 5% to 5.25% by the end of 2023. That suggests that the Fed is poised to raise its rate by an additional three-quarters of a point and leave it there through next year. Some economists had expected that the Fed would project only an additional half-point increase.
The latest rate hike was announced one day after an encouraging report showed that inflation in the United States slowed in November for a fifth straight month. The year-over-year increase of 7.1%, though still high, was sharply below a recent peak of 9.1% in June.
“The inflation data in October and November show a welcome reduction,” Powell said at his news conference. “But it will take substantially more evidence to give confidence that inflation is on a sustained downward path.”
In its updated forecasts, the Fed’s policymakers predicted slower growth and higher unemployment for next year and 2024. The unemployment rate is envisioned to jump to 4.6% by the end of 2023, from 3.7% today. That would mark a significant increase in joblessness that typically would reflect a recession.
Consistent with a sharp slowdown, the officials also projected that the economy will barely grow next year, expanding just 0.5%, less than half the forecast it had made in September.
In recent weeks, Fed officials have indicated that they see some evidence of progress in their drive to defeat the worst inflation bout in four decades and bring inflation back down to their 2% annual target. The national average for a gallon of regular gas, for example, has tumbled from $5 in June to $3.21.
Many supply chains are no longer clogged, thereby helping reduce goods prices. The better-than-expected November inflation data showed that the prices of used cars, furniture and toys all declined last month.
So did the costs of services from hotels to airfares to car rentals. Rental and home prices are falling, too, though those declines have yet to feed into the government’s data.
And one measure the Fed tracks closely — “core” prices, which exclude volatile food and energy costs for a clearer snapshot of underlying inflation — rose only slightly for a second straight month.
Inflation in the 19 countries using the euro currency fell to 10% from 10.6% in October, the first decline since June 2021. The rate is so far above the bank’s 2% goal that rate hikes are expected to continue into next year. Britain’s inflation also eased from a 41-year record of 11.1% in October to a still-high 10.7% in November.
Many economists think the Fed will further downshift to a quarter-point rate hike when it next meets early next year. Asked about that Wednesday, Powell said he has yet to decide how large he thinks the next hike should be. But having raised rates so fast, he said, “we think the appropriate thing to do now is to move at a slower pace. That will allow us to feel our way.”
Powell downplayed any notion that the Fed might decide to reverse course next year and start cutting rates to support growth, as Wall Street investors are expecting.
“I wouldn’t see the committee cutting rates until we’re confident that inflation is moving down in a sustained way,” he said.
Cumulatively, the Fed’s hikes have led to much costlier borrowing rates for consumers as well as companies, ranging from mortgages to auto and business loans. They have sent home sales plummeting and are starting to weigh down rents on new apartments, a leading source of high inflation.
Fed officials have said they want rates to reach “restrictive” levels that slow growth and hiring and bring inflation down to their target range. Worries have grown that the Fed is raising rates so much in its drive to curb inflation that it will trigger a recession next year.
The policymakers have stressed that more significant than how fast they raise rates is how long they keep them at or near their peak.
“It’s far more important to think what is the ultimate level,” Powell said Wednesday.
WASHINGTON– Heads of food banks and non-profits throughout the United States say they are struggling to keep up with demand as the cost of groceries, fuel prices and other goods are leading first time recipients, many identified as middle class, to turn to these resources for help.
“Lines are getting longer at food pantries. Demand for food assistance is growing. And that is certainly putting a strain on the emergency food system,” Kyle Waide, president and CEO of the Atlanta Community Food Bank told the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
A report published last week by the Bureau of Labor Statistics stated that with inflation rates at a 40-year high, middle and working class Americans are struggling to survive.
Matt Pieper, the executive director of the food nonprofit Open Hand Atlanta, and Board president of Georgia Meals on Wheels State Association told the Constitution that the number of calls he gets in a day from people who are seeking food assistance has nearly tripled.
“There isn’t a program that I’ve talked with throughout the state that isn’t seeing an increase in demand for services, as inflation has skyrocketed and as the cost of fuel has skyrocketed,” said Pieper, whose organization provides about 5,500 meals a day.
“We’re feeding more seniors than we ever have before, because more seniors are accessing services because they’re running out of money,” he said.
According to the report published by the BLS, more than 18 million Americans sometimes didn’t have enough to eat last month and more than 5 million people often went hungry.
WASHINGTON– Single American workers have lost $3,400 in annual wages during the first 18 month’s of Joe Biden’s presidency due to economic policies which have resulted in 40-year-high inflation, according to an expert at the Heritage Foundation.
In an interview with Fox News E.J. Antoni, a research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, said a family with two working parents has lost $6,800 in annual wages.
“I can’t emphasize enough how much this is really crushing consumers,” Antoni said about his estimate.
“It’s [inflation] truly crushing the middle class and then the White House spokesperson says these garbage lines like ‘the economy is in transition,’” he said. “Transition in the same sense, I suppose, that an iceberg transitioned the Titanic into a submarine.”
Despite bipartisan criticism of Biden’s economic policies the White House continues to spin the economic downturn claiming inflation will help consumers adapt to the more expensive renewable energy plans that the administration intends to implement.
On Wednesday, inflation rose to an annual rate of 9.1 percent which, according to the Department of Labor, is the highest rate since 1981.
According to a Moody’s analysis, Biden’s 40-year-high inflation will cost American households on average an extra $5,520 in 2022, or $460 per month.
As Americans continue to struggle at the pump, 74 percent of likely voters said skyrocketing gas prices are an “extremely/very important” factor in how they will vote in the midterm elections.
Current poll numbers show Biden’s approval rating remains in the low 30’s.
WASHINGTON– White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Thursday confirmed that Joe Biden will move forward with his controversial plans to end fossil fuels despite record setting high gas prices.
“We don’t need to” drill more oil in the US Karine Jean-Pierre said after Fox News journalist Peter Doocy asked Jean-Pierre why the US isn’t drilling for more oil.
“The president once said he’s going to end fossil fuel. Is that now off the table,” Doocy asked.
“No. We are going to continue to move forward…” Jean-Pierre responded.
During his presidential campaign Biden promised to once and for all end the fossil fuels industry.
“No more drilling on federal lands. No more drilling, including offshore. No ability for the oil industry to continue to drill. Period.” Biden said on the campaign trail in 2020.
WASHINGTON (Fox Business) — Sen. Rand Paul on Monday unveiled a new bill that includes trillions in budget cuts over the next five years in order to bring about a balanced budget.
The Kentucky Republican’s proposal, a copy of which was first obtained by FOX Business, would yield a $65.8 billion surplus by fiscal year 2027. Collectively, the plan spends about $4.2 trillion less than the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated during that time period, a person familiar with the matter said.
“Five years ago, we could balance our budget with a freeze in spending. Not cut anything. Since then, our debt has skyrocketed to $30 trillion with $2 trillion just from this past year,” Paul said in a statement. “We cannot keep ignoring this problem at the expense of taxpayers, and my budget will put our nation on track to solve this crisis that Congress created.”
The plan calls for cuts across the budget, excluding Social Security, which is racing toward insolvency. What is cut will be determined at a later time through the normal spending process. The goal is to set a parameter that Congress must fit its spending agenda within, rather than identifying specific cuts now.
Under the legislation, federal spending would freeze in fiscal year 2023 at the CBO’s projected baseline level of $5.874 trillion. From there, it would steadily decline each year; in fiscal year 2024, Paul proposed slashing federal spending by $298.3 billion.
Still, the success odds for the bill – dubbed the Six Penny Plan – are slim. Paul has introduced near-identical versions of the bill in the past, all of which have died in the Senate as the result of bipartisan opposition. Democrats previously opposed cuts to many domestic programs, while Republicans resisted any efforts to slash military spending.
The gap between what the nation collects and what it spends has started to substantially decline following last year’s $2.8 trillion deficit, with the government expected to post a deficit of $1 trillion in fiscal 2022.
But the CBO, in its latest budget and economic outlook released at the end of May, projected the shortfall will begin climbing again in 2024, eventually hitting more than 6% of GDP a decade from now. The U.S. has only recorded greater deficits than that six times since 1946.
“This is no time to break out the champagne glasses – deficits will remain extremely high and debt is on course to reach a new record as a share of the economy by 2031,” Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said in a statement after the report was released.
The nation’s debt level is currently at a historic high of $30 trillion following unprecedented levels of spending during the COVID-19 pandemic.
WASHINGTON (Daily Caller) — The Biden administration is expected to soon announce it would ease sanctions on Venezuelan oil amid the ongoing energy crisis, several media outlets reported.
The federal government will ease “some” of the energy sanctions on Venezuela, two senior administration officials told CNN. In addition, U.S. oil corporation Chevron will be allowed to enter into negotiations with Venezuelan state-owned firm PDVSA over potential continued operations in the South American oil-rich nation.
As part of the deal, Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro agreed to open talks with opposition leader Juan Guaidó, Reuters reported.
While the U.S. has pursued an aggressive sanctions regime against Venezuela for more than 15 years, in 2019 the Trump administration imposed a fresh swath of restrictions on the South American nation’s oil industry to renew pressure on Maduro, a 2021 report from the Congressional Research Service showed. Trump administration White House officials said the sanctions would reduce Venezuela’s oil exports by $11 billion.
As a result of the Trump-era sanctions, the U.S. hasn’t imported oil from Venezuela since May 2019, according to government data. The U.S. imported about 462,000 barrels of oil per day from Venezuela in 2018, and it imported 670,000 barrels per day from Russia in 2021.
Chevron has recently lobbied the federal government to remove the sanctions, according to Senate disclosures.
“Our experience buying Russian energy should have taught President Biden that buying energy from tyrants is a dangerous proposition,” Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Ranking Member John Barrasso said in a statement.
“Yet President Biden continues to reward our enemies by waiving sanctions while his administration does its best to kill American energy production. Funding despots isn’t in the national interest. Supporting American energy is,” he continued.
Venezuela consistently ranks as one of the least “free” countries in the world, according to Freedom House.
Meanwhile, the Biden administration has increasingly moved to restrict further domestic oil and gas production. The Department of the Interior canceled the three remaining federal offshore oil and gas lease sales last week and dramatically scaled back the federal onshore program in April.
The average price of gasoline reached an all-time record $4.52 a gallon on Tuesday, according to AAA data.
The Daily Caller’s Thomas Catenacci contributed to the contents of this report.
WASHINGTON (The Hill) — A new NBC News poll shows President Biden’s job approval rating has dipped to another low, with just 39 percent of Americans approving of the job he’s doing and 56 percent disapproving.
Americans are dinging the president on inflation, the economy and border security, as they have been for much of his presidency. Only 37 percent of Americans view Biden in a positive light, according to the poll, which shows his favorability rating hovers around the same percentage currently as former President Trump’s.
Biden appears to have lost ground once again after making some gains. Earlier this month, 42 percent of Americans approved of Biden’s job in a Washington Post-ABC News poll, which was up 5 percentage points from a previous poll in February.
In the NBC News poll, 59 percent of Americans approve of Biden’s handling of the coronavirus, where the president has consistently earned the best marks.
But only 33 percent of Americans approve of his handling of the economy, and only 23 percent approve of his handling of inflation and the cost of living, two issues that are likely to be among the most important at the ballot box in November.
Gas prices have surged to record highs this year, topping an average national price of $4.47 per gallon, while prices at grocery stores have also seen steep increases. Last week, reports of a shortage of baby formula triggered another round of anguish among American families.
About 41 percent of Americans say they are “somewhat satisfied” with their current financial situation, according to the poll, with 16 percent saying they are very dissatisfied with their financial situation.
Americans rank cost of living, the economy, voting rights and abortion in that order as the top four issues facing the nation.
The poll was conducted from May 5 to May 7 and then May 9 to May 10 among 1,000 respondents. The margin of error is 3 percentage points.
The Hill’s Brad Dress contributed to the contents of this report.
WASHINGTON (The Hill) — Joe Biden on Monday signed into law a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill at a boisterous ceremony at the White House, sealing a major accomplishment of his first term after weeks of negotiations in the House culminated in a bipartisan vote.
Biden welcomed lawmakers from both parties, from Congress and from state and local governments, to celebrate the passage of the bill and tout what he insisted would be the transformational ways it would improve day-to-day life for many Americans.
Biden used the bill signing to highlight a rare instance of bipartisanship at a polarized time in U.S. politics, even as former President Trump and other conservatives were suggesting House Republicans who voted for the bill should be challenged in primaries or stripped of committee assignments.
After weeks of talks and two trips to the Capitol from Biden, the House voted on the infrastructure bill earlier this month, passing it with a final tally of 228-206, with 13 Republicans crossing the aisle to support the measure, and six progressive Democrats bucking Biden and party leaders to oppose it.
The Senate passed the bill three months earlier in August, with 19 Republicans joining Democrats to move it to the House. The legislation languished there for weeks as progressives sought assurances on the other key piece of Biden’s economic agenda — a social spending bill focused on climate, child care and health care programs that Democrats intend to pass without GOP support through budget reconciliation.
The $1.2 trillion bill, which contains roughly $550 billion in new funding, will provide for new investments in roads, bridges and railways around the country. White House officials have also said it will allow for the replacement of lead pipes to provide clean drinking water to communities, establish a network of electric vehicle charging stations and help expand internet access for swaths of the country that do not have it.
Biden has tapped former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu (D) as a senior White House adviser to coordinate the implementation of the bill, which cuts across several government agencies.
Democrats are hoping that officials will be able to get some projects up and running quickly so the public feels the impact of the legislation, which could help Biden and his party politically ahead of the midterms.
Biden’s approval ratings have been sinking for several weeks and it’s unclear thus far whether the president will see a bump from the infrastructure bill becoming law.
A new Washington Post-ABC News poll conducted after the infrastructure bill passed the House found that 41 percent approve of Biden’s handling of the presidency, while 53 percent disapprove, a new low for Biden in the survey.
Attention will now shift to the fate of a $1.75 trillion proposal that is contains many of the priorities of Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, including funding to combat climate change, efforts to expand health care access and child care assistance, as well as money toward education and housing programs.
If the House passes the reconciliation bill, it will likely be tweaked in the Senate, where Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) has expressed reservations about moving too quickly with such a major piece of legislation.