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Has The Fed Ever Hiked Rates With Wage Growth So Slow?

The Fed, and when it might start raising the Federal Funds target rate, continues to garner a lion's share of attention.

Within this context, a major discussion point is wage growth. There's a common presumption among Fed observers that Ms. Yellen, the current chairwoman of the Federal Reserve, pays close attention to average pay. Some speculate, based on previous writings, that average pay might be the most important indicator for her.

This is interesting and presents a conundrum for Ms. Yellen.

On the one hand, evidence suggests she should have raised the Federal Funds rate a while ago. Any further pushing-off of a Fed tightening cycle may simply worsen the depth of the financial market's response when she finally gets around to raising rates.

On the other hand, her favorite indicator - average wage growth - is still weak (incredibly weak for this stage of the economic expansion).

Does she stick with her head (average wage growth, wait to hike rates) or her gut (equity market conditions...


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