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The thankless jobs of running the TARP program, Republican candidate for governor of California and president of the Minneapolis Fed might turn even those with the sunniest dispositions a bit bleak. So it is with Neel Kashkari. Try as he might, he just can’t see the silver lining these days, in banks, inflation or rate cuts. And he’s still definitely not seeing the light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel that comes with wearing special White House-issued glasses and then looking directly into the sun.

A trio of White House economic officials went on Sunday news shows and said they expected a very strong second half of 2020 and a roaring 2021. Asked on ABC’s “This Week” if this was a realistic forecast, Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari replied: “I wish it were….”

“The virus continues to spread. And when we look around the world, there is evidence that when countries relax their economic controls, the virus tends to flare back up again,” Kashkari said…. “I would love to see a robust recovery but that would require a breakthrough in vaccines, a breakthrough in widespread testing, a breakthrough in therapies to give all of us confidence that it is safe to go back. I don’t know when we’re going to have that confidence.”

Then again, Neel Kashkari is perfectly capable of giving himself haircuts, and so isn’t in as much of a rush to escape self-quarantine as some others.

Fed’s Kashkari throws cold water on White House optimism about a ‘snapback’ economic recovery [MarketWatch]


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