A Project of The Annenberg Public Policy Center
FactCheck.org is celebrating 15 years of holding politicians accountable.

Bogus Claim on Interest Rate Increases


Quick Take

The Federal Reserve has raised interest rates nine times since 2015, so a claim circulating on social media that there were no increases during the Obama administration is wrong.


Full Story

The central bank raised interest rates on Dec. 19, 2018 for the ninth time since 2015.

Two of those increases were during the last two years of President Barack Obama’s administration, which inherited a weak economy following the Great Recession that began in 2007. The other seven increases came after President Donald Trump took office in January 2017.

So, this claim circulating on social media is wrong: “Federal Reserve raises interest rates THE FOURTH TIME since Trump was elected. It raised them zero times under Obama. The goal? Slow down Trump’s economic boom. Economic slowdown will affect the 2020 election. Another Deep State move.”

The claim started out on Twitter, where it was retweeted more than 4,000 times, then it migrated to Facebook, where it’s been shared more than 2,500 times.

The Federal Reserve lists the increases on its website. There are also press releases for each of nine as well.

Also, Jerome Powell, whom Trump nominated to be chairman of the Federal Reserve, has voted for each of them — first as a board member and then after he became the chairman in early 2018. So, Trump chose Powell to lead the central bank after he had voted for five interest rate increases.

Editor’s note: FactCheck.org is one of several organizations working with Facebook to debunk misinformation shared on the social media network.

Sources

Federal Reserve issues FOMC statement.” Press release. Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.

The National Bureau of Economic Research. “Business Cycle Dating Committee, National Bureau of Economic Research.” Report. 1 Dec 2008.

Shipp, Kevin (@Kevin_Shipp). “Federal Reserve raises interest rates THE FOURTH TIME since Trump was elected. It raised them zero times under Obama. The goal? Slow down Trump’s economic boom. Economic slowdown will affect the 2020 election. Another Deep State move.” Twitter. 19 Dec 2018.

President Donald J. Trump Announces Nomination of Jerome Powell to be Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.” Press release. The White House. 2 Nov 2017.

Confirmation of Jerome H. Powell as Chairman of the Federal Reserve System. PN 1353. 23 Jan 2018.

Share the Facts
7
1
11
FactCheck.org rating logo FactCheck.org Rating:
False
The Federal Reserve raised interest rates "zero times under Obama."
Wednesday, December 19, 2018