Here we go again.
A week after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin unleashed FX vol chaos when he said in Davos that “a weaker dollar is good for us as it relates to trade and opportunities”, which spread to the bond market and most recently to stocks, Mnuchin was on the tape again moments ago, and during a hearing at the Senate Banking Committee in DC., the former Goldmanite said that he “absolutely supports a strong dollar over the long term”, adding that “I strongly support we have a free currency market that we don’t intervene in.”
As for the key issue, namely day to day fluctuations in the USD, Mnuchin said that the short-term level of dollar “is not a concern.”
Mnuchin also said that his comments on dollar in Davos “were blown out of proportion by media” and were in no way “intended to talk down dollar.”
In response, there was a modest knee jerk reaction higher in USD with USDJPY rising above 108.80 briefly, and the BBDXY bouncing but it has been a controlled reaction as the market has learned to ignore the Mnuchin “noise.”
Finally, discussing the upcoming federal debt-ceiling negotiation, Mnuchin says “we are very open to bipartisan solutions to figure out something as an alternative to the current system, which I think many of us would agree doesn’t work very well.”
Good luck with that, especially if the government is shut down in the weeks leading into the debt ceiling X-Date, after which the US government will be officially in technical default.