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Expand chart
Data: Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, FactSet; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

President Trump tweeted an interesting combination of truth, non-sequiturs and lies on Tuesday involving China and the Federal Reserve.

"China is adding great stimulus to its economy while at the same time keeping interest rates low. Our Federal Reserve has incessantly lifted interest rates, even though inflation is very low, and instituted a very big dose of quantitative tightening. We have the potential to go...
"...up like a rocket if we did some lowering of rates, like one point, and some quantitative easing. Yes, we are doing very well at 3.2% GDP, but with our wonderfully low inflation, we could be setting major records &, at the same time, make our National Debt start to look small!"

Reality check: China added stimulus to its economy recently, but it's quaint compared to the military industrial and farm-aid spending added by the U.S. under Trump. China's stimulus has also come largely from the fiscal side — tax and fee cuts and looser lending standards — rather than the central bank.

  • China's central bank has reduced the reserve requirements ratio (RRR) for banks, but has not lowered its policy rate — the thing Trump is calling on the Fed to do — since October 2015. China's central bank policy rate is about 2% higher than the U.S. rate.
  • China's RRR — 14% for large institutions and 12% for small ones — even after recent cuts is significantly higher than that of the U.S. (10% and 3%).
  • The Fed raised rates in 2015 for the first time in nearly a decade and has backed off of the expected quantitative tightening it was set to engage in this year.

Go deeper: Investors loaded up on China at the start of 2019

Go deeper

Biden will reverse Trump's attempt to lift COVID related travel restrictions

Photo: Tasos Katopodis via Getty

The incoming Biden administration will reverse President Trump's last-minute order to lift COVID-19 related travel restrictions, Jen Psaki, the incoming White House press secretary, tweeted.

Why it matters: President Trump ordered entry bans lifted for travelers from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil and much of Europe to go into effect Jan. 26, but the Biden administration will "strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19," Jen Psaki said. Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, Jan. 20 and Trump will no longer be president by the time the order is set to go into effect.

Dominion sends cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell

Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Dominion Voting Systems on Monday sent a cease and desist letter to My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell over his spread of misinformation related to the 2020 election.

Why it matters: Trump and several of his allies have pushed false conspiracy theories about the company, leading Dominion to take legal action. It's suing pro-Trump lawyer Sidney Powell for defamation and $1.3 billion in damages, and a Dominion employee has sued Trump himself, OANN and Newsmax.

Off the Rails

Episode 5: The secret CIA plan

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer, Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 5: Trump vs. Gina — The president becomes increasingly rash and devises a plan to tamper with the nation's intelligence command.

In his final weeks in office, after losing the election to Joe Biden, President Donald Trump embarked on a vengeful exit strategy that included a hasty and ill-thought-out plan to jam up CIA Director Gina Haspel by firing her top deputy and replacing him with a protege of Republican Congressman Devin Nunes.