InternationalMarkets & Economy

The Fed speaks with many voices — most of them egos with microphones

A few of the regional voices, though, are extraordinary

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Takeaways: The core of good market information today is the central bankers themselves. The Fed speaks with many voices, and most of those are egos with microphones. Current GDP (gross domestic product) growth in the 2 percent to 2.5 percent range is unsustainably too fast, and the Fed intends to lean against it, the only question is how soon and how hard. I have many friends who hang on every word from rich guys on Wall Street: mutual and hedge fund managers, securities firm economists and pooh-bahs, and just plain rich guys who got rich by playing on the Street. But these sources are either salespeople or winners who have little to say about the role of good fortune in their fortunes. The core of good information today is the central bankers themselves. For good or ill, we are in an era -- an epoch, not a transient moment -- in which the central bankers matter more than markets. Yet, in the greatest oddity of our time, the central bankers appear to be powerless t...