From Matthew J. Belvedere at CNBC:
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Longtime Fed critic and libertarian champion Ron Paul on CNBC Wednesday blasted the idea of negative interest rates.
“This whole idea of the Federal Reserve taking interest rates down to zero, then minus … this hurts people,” Paul told “Squawk Box” in a wide-ranging interview that also included his views on the Republican presidential race.
In a speech Tuesday evening, Fed Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer said the U.S. central bank is looking at negative rates. But Fischer added there were no plans to use them.
The Bank of Japan unexpectedly adopted negative rates last month, joining a small group of central banks, including the European Central Bank, that charge lenders for parking their excess funds with them.
“The biggest problem we face is economic,” Paul said, adding the U.S. economy is much…