Fed hawks, doves, and centrists: How US central bankers'?views are changing

BY Reuters | ECONOMIC | 12/01/23 02:25 PM EST

(Reuters) - The labels "dove" and "hawk" have long been used by central bank watchers to describe the monetary policy leanings of policymakers, with a dove more focused on risks to the labor market and a hawk more focused on the threat of inflation.

The topsy-turvy economic environment of the coronavirus pandemic sidelined those differences, turning U.S. Federal Reserve officials at first universally dovish as they sought to provide massive accommodation for a cratering economy, and then, when inflation surged, into hawks who uniformly backed aggressive interest rate hikes.

Now, as Fed policymakers note improvement on inflation and some cooling in the labor market, the risks are seen as more balanced and the choices more nuanced.

All 12 regional Fed presidents discuss and debate monetary policy at Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meetings that are held eight times a year, but only five cast votes at any given meeting, including the New York Fed president and four others who vote for one year at a time on a rotating schedule.

The following chart offers a look at how officials currently stack up on their outlooks for Fed policy and how to balance their goals of stable prices and full employment. The designations are based on comments and published remarks; for more on the thinking that shaped these hawk-dove designations, click on the photos in this graphic.

Reuters over time has shifted policymaker designations based on fresh comments and developing circumstances - for an accounting of how our counts have changed please scroll to the bottom of this story.

Dove Dovish Centrist Hawkish Hawk

? Patrick Jerome Neel Michelle

Harker, Powell, Fed Kashkari, Bowman,

Philadelph Chair, Minneapol Governor,

ia Fed permanent is Fed permanent

President, voter: President voter: "My

2023 "Having come , 2023 baseline

voter: "A so far so voter: economic

decrease quickly, the "When outlook

in the FOMC is activity continues

policy moving continues to expect

rate is forward to run that we

not carefully, this hot, will need

something as the risks that to

that is of under- makes me increase

likely to and question the

happen in over-tighten if policy federal

the short ing are is as funds rate

term." becoming tight as further."

Nov. 8, more we assume Nov. 28,

2023 balanced." it 2023

? Dec 1, 2023 currently

is." Nov.

7, 2023

? Raphael John Lorie ?

Bostic, Williams, Logan,

Atlanta New York Fed Dallas

Fed President, Fed

President, permanent President

2024 voter: "We , 2023

voter: "I are at, or voter:

don't near, the "We have

think peak level seen some

we've seen of the retraceme

the full target range nt in

effects of of the that

restrictiv federal 10-year

e policy." funds rate." yield and

Nov. 29, Nov 30, 2023 financial

2023 condition

s, and so

I'll be

watching

to see

whether

that

continues

and what

that

means for

the

implicati

ons of

policy,"

Nov. 7,

2023

? ? Philip Loretta ?

Jefferson, Mester,

Vice Chair: Cleveland

"We are in a Fed

sensitive President

period of , 2024

risk voter:

management, "Monetary

where we policy is

have to in a good

balance the place for

risk of not policymak

having ers to

tightened assess

enough, incoming

against the informati

risk of on on the

policy being economy

too and

restrictive. financial

" Oct. 9, condition

2023 s." Nov.

29, 2023

? ? Christopher Thomas ?

Waller, Barkin,

Governor, Richmond

permanent Fed

voter: "I am President

increasingly , 2024

confident voter:

that policy "If

is currently inflation

well is going

positioned to flare

to slow the back up,

economy and I think

get you want

inflation to have

back to 2%." the

Nov. 28, option of

2023 doing

more on

rates."

Nov. 29,

2023

? ? Michael ? ?

Barr, Vice

Chair of

Supervision,

permanent

voter: The

Fed is "at

or near the

peak" of

interest

rates." Nov.

17, 2023

? ? Lisa Cook, ? ?

Governor,

permanent

voter: ?"I

see risks as

two-sided,

requiring us

to balance

the risk of

not

tightening

enough

against the

risk of

tightening

too much."

Nov. 16,

2023

? ? Austan ? ?

Goolsbee,

Chicago Fed

President,

2023 voter:

"It's

working

through in

the way

we've

anticipated.

" Dec. 1,

2023

? ? Mary Daly, ? ?

San

Francisco

Fed

President,

2024 voter:

"I'm

thinking

about

whether we

have enough

tightening

in the

system and

are

sufficiently

restrictive

to restore

price

stability.

Discussions

about

interest

rate cuts

are not

particularly

helpful at

the moment."

Nov. 30,

2023

? ? Susan ? ?

Collins,

Boston Fed

President,

2025 voter:

The Fed

should be

"patient and

resolute,

and I

wouldn't

take

additional

firming off

the table."

Nov. 17,

2023

Note: Fed policymakers began raising interest rates in March 2022 to bring down high inflation. Their most recent policy rate hike, to a range of 5.25%-5.50%, was in July.

Most policymakers as of September expected one more rate hike by the end of this year, but recently many have expressed more confidence that none will be needed. Neither Jeff Schmid, who has been the Kansas City Fed's president since August and will be a voter on the FOMC in 2025, nor Adriana Kugler, a permanent voter who was confirmed to the Fed's Board of Governors in September, have yet made any substantive policy remarks. The St. Louis Fed has begun a search to replace its former president, James Bullard, who took a job in academia; the new chief will be a voter on the policy-setting committee in 2025. Interim St. Louis Fed chief Kathleen O'Neill Paese appears to lean hawkish.?

Below is a Reuters count of policymakers in each category, heading into recent Fed meetings.

FOMC Date Dove Dovish Centri Hawkis Hawk

st h

Dec '23 2 9 4

0 1

Oct/Nov '23 0 2 7 5 2

Sept '23 0 4 3 6 3

June '23 0 3 3 8 3

March '23 0 2 3 10 2

Dec '22 0 4 1 12 2

(Reporting by Ann Saphir; Editing by Paul Simao)

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