In front of a crowd of nearly 800 members and guests, as well as more than 60 members of the media, The Honorable Jerome H. Powell, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, shared with David Rubenstein his outlook on future Federal Reserve System policy and the state of the global economy. Chairman Powell reiterated the point that 2019 will be a year to watch the economy evolve patiently, due in large part to the growth seen in 2018. He also noted that he sees no evidence of a potential recession, given the financial data he receives. "Recessions are often caused by two things... one is inflation that is high enough that the Fed has to hit the brakes... [the other is] a matter of mounting financial imbalances [such as] the housing bubble... We don't see those risks," he said. Chairman Powell did share several worries, however, including the potential impact of a long-term government shutdown on the U.S. economy. "If we have an extended shutdown, and I do think that would show up in the data pretty clearly,... we would have a less clear picture into the economy," he warned. The Signature Event with Chairman Powell was one of the most highly publicized events in recent Economic Club history, with over 3,000 print media mentions highlighting the event.
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