Investor Steve Eisman, who took short positions against the housing market leading up to the 2008 crisis, believes that it would be ill-advised for the Fed to start cutting interest rates.
In a new CNBC interview, Eisman says the US economy looks solid on the back of healthy consumer spending.
According to the “Big Short” investor, there’s no point in entertaining the idea of a collapse or a recession until weak economic data starts to come in.
“All I can say is that 70% of the US economy is consumer-driven. The consumer seems to be pretty strong. They still have savings. They’re spending money so why everybody is getting so hysterical, I don’t get it.
Everybody should just wait. When they’ll be a negative data point, we can talk about it. Until then, it seems to me the economy is just fine.”
Eisman says he would start to be concerned about the health of the economy if he sees data indicating that consumers are struggling to pay off their debt.
“I look at credit. If consumer credit quality would just start to really deteriorate like it started in late 2006, okay. Until then as long as the consumer is healthy, I don’t think there’s really much to talk about.”
With the economy in a strong position despite recession fears, Eisman says it would be better if the Fed kept interest rates at current levels. According to the investor, rate cuts may lead to inflation rearing its ugly head again.
“They’ve engineered what looks to be a soft landing. Inflation is coming down, the economy is still strong. Why would you waste rate cuts now and risk the resurgence of inflation when all you really need to do is declare victory and say we’ve engineered something really pretty fantastic and wait to see some data?
If the economy really starts to weaken, we’ll hold that in reserve. Until then, we’ll leave things just the way they are. They seem to be pretty good.”
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