FIRST AIRED: December 23, 2018

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COMING UP:Share Opener Variant 1



>> Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is increasingly becoming a target of US President Donald Trump. Sources tell Reuters Trump has privately discussed the idea of firing Powell over the Fed's interest rate hikes. An unprecedented move that could rock financial markets and be seen as an attack on the Central Bank's independence.
Just this past Tuesday, Trump warned against raising the rates amid a precipitous recent slide in the US stock market. The President tweeting, feel the market, don't just go by meaningless numbers. The bank then lifted rates for the fourth time this year on Wednesday, citing the US economy's strength.
>> This is the best year since the financial crisis. You have growth well above trend.>> US stocks fell hard after the Fed's decision, and amid uncertainty over a partial government shutdown. A president can dismiss a Fed board member for cause. But analysts say Trump's frustrations with the rate hikes would likely fall short of that standard.
The White House and a Fed spokeswoman declined to comment. Though Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin tweeted on Saturday, saying he had spoken with Trump. Who said he disagrees with Fed policy, but never suggested firing Powell. Powell was appointed by Trump and sworn in as Fed Chairman last February