If President Donald Trump couldn't say, "you're fired" to Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, he at least wanted to say, "you're demoted."
According to a Bloomberg report on Tuesday, the Trump administration actively explored taking legal action to demote Powell -- an extraordinary and unorthodox move that calls into question the White House's perception of the central bank's independence -- and track record.
According to Bloomberg, the White House explored the legality of demoting Powell back in February, with the White House general counsel's office weighing the legality of stripping Powell of his chairmanship and leaving him as just a Fed governor.
The review came after President Donald Trump spoke of firing Powell, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
Bloomberg said it didn't know the result of the administration's review.
Trump has been a vocal critic of Powell, arguing the Fed chairman has stymied the ongoing U.S. economic expansion by raising the benchmark interest rate more than has been necessary.
Trump last week told ABC News's George Stephanopoulos that he disagreed entirely with Powell's actions to raise rates to temper economic growth.
"Frankly, if we had a different person in the Federal Reserve that wouldn't have raised interest rates so much we would have been at least a point and a half higher," Trump said, apparently referring to the pace of U.S. economic growth.
The Fed's decision-making committee, called the Federal Open Market Committee, will announce its decision on whether to cut rates at 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday. Many economists and market watchers are anticipating the Fed won't cut its benchmark fed funds rate but could so at the meeting in July.
The rate is currently 2.25%.
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