What happens when Cerberus — the three-headed beast guarding the gates of hell — loses all of its heads?
We’ll find out early spring of next year as The Federal Reserve could be without its present Chairperson, Vice Chairperson and head of the New York Fed.The vice chair position was vacated last month when former Israeli central banker Stanley Fischer and could be replaced by President Trump’s nominee Randal Quarles, pending confirmation.
Chair Janet Yellen will more than likely step down from the Fed when her term is up in 2018 and pending Senate confirmation like Quarles, be replaced by Jerome Powell in February.
And now the third head, New York Fed chief William Dudley has said he will speed up his departure by 6 months to late spring of 2018.
The New York Fed is the first among equals when it comes to the regional banks.
This outpost has the biggest oversight in the banking world and is the trading desk that executes Federal Reserve policy, whether tightening or loosening interest rates.
While there is plenty of institutional knowledge within the Fed — and some say that knowledge should be lost — the turnover could be jarring to markets as the playbook may change albeit no more than slightly.
Will these three not have the fear of inflation haunting them to the point that they spur policies that could bring back more robust growth.
Will they damn the torpedos and unlock the banks from near-zero interest paid on savings? Make it uncomfortable for large financial firms from parking their cash at the Fed and earning interest and tell them to put that money to work in the economy?
Perhaps slightly, but then again who knows?
While Dudley said he wanted to leave early for other reasons the timing is curious since it comes days after Powell’s selection to replace Yellen.
Dudley worked under then-NY Fed chief Tim Geithner during the weekends at Bernie’s in 2008 after the Lehman Bros. bankruptcy when for three weekends in a row the economy was spare destruction as financial firms were merged and/or bought out before Asian markets opened Sunday night.
Perhaps Dudley felt spurned by not being elevated to Washington, but how many ex-Goldman guys do we need in DC?