A top Federal Reserve official is eager for Congress and the White House to pursue new policies — to a certain point.
Stanley Fischer, the Fed’s vice chair, argued Monday that the possibility of new fiscal policy out of Washington could help boost the U.S. economy after years of gridlock.However, he stopped short of endorsing any particular policy course, and even expressed concern that a GOP-controlled Washington could take steps in the wrong direction.
Speaking before the Council on Foreign Relations, Fischer reiterated a long-lasting Fed gripe, which is that its efforts to steer the economy through monetary policy have their limits, and policymakers have done little to help on the fiscal side.
“For many years, the Fed has been close to the only game in town,” he said. “Macroeconomic policy does not have to be confined to monetary policy. It was the only game in town because the others didn’t even want to play.”