CNBC personality Jim Cramer says rising crude oil prices could cause an avalanche of inflationary pressure throughout the US economy.
In a new episode of Mad Money, Cramer says Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell may make the decision to raise interest rates again this week, putting pressure on risk assets.
The Fed is expected to make an announcement this Thursday to pause raising the Fed Funds rate at 5.50%, but Cramer says another hike is more likely, especially given the price of oil, which has risen from $69 to over $90 since June.
“Powell is much more worried about stopping inflation than he is about preserving earnings or jobs or corporate balance sheets, or consumer spending for that matter. He has to swim against the tide and talk about whether inflation is still trending lower – an argument that gets harder to make as oil gets higher and higher right?
The price of crude has snuck up to $90 – and by the way, it seems headed to $100 – where the sky-high cost of fuel might get embedded into the whole system. I don’t know if that’s enough to change the Fed’s actions, but it’s clearly enough to change Jay Powell’s words. It gives him more reason to stay hawkish in his statement and the following Q&A session.”
The TV personality says there could be “turbulence” in the markets this week if the Fed announces a surprise hike.
“The bottom line is, when there’s a Fed meeting coming up in less than a week, and nobody seems worried about it, maybe you want to brace yourself for a little turbulence.”
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