Nearly as fast as stocks surged and bond yields dipped, there were statements that Powell had blinked. Some even implied that he caved to the president to save his job.
To both statements, I say hogwash.
First and foremost, Powell did not blink. He reacted to data, and that data had softened significantly since his statement in October.
To suggest that the Fed should ignore worsening financial conditions, widening spreads on corporate credit, a global slowdown, particularly China’s growth dipping to its weakest level since 2009, a myriad of CEO warnings, an 8.9 percent decline in new home sales and agriculture producer sentiment at its lowest levels in nearly three years would imply that the Fed isn’t at all “data dependent” and should continue to signal that the central bank was still a long way from neutral, markets, corporations and the U.S. economy be dammed.
Secondarily, Powell doesn’t need this job. He has a degree in politics from Princeton and a law degree from Georgetown. In addition to his lengthy government service, he worked as an investment banker at Dillon, Read & Co. and spent nearly a decade as a partner at Carlyle Group. Following that, from 2010 through 2012 he was a visiting scholar at the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, where he worked for a salary of $1 per year.
Now in all seriousness folks, does that resume or his work during the debt crisis suggest to you that he needs this job?
Jon Najarian is a CNBC contributor and co-founder of Investitute.com.