Stop the presses: Jeff Gundlach and Bill Gross have agreed on something. The bond market heavyweights have both suggested the same candidate could potentially replace Janet Yellen at the top of the Federal Reserve.
In separate interviews over the weekend, Janus Henderson’s Gross and DoubleLine co-founder Gundlach said Neel Kashkari could make a solid replacement for Yellen when her term ends in February.
While Donald Trump is understood to not currently be considering Kashkari – with Gary Cohn viewed as his preferred replacement for Yellen – this did not stop the two bond managers voicing their admiration.
Gross previously crossed paths with Kashkari at Pimco when the latter was handed the remit of building up the bond house’s equity efforts. This saw Kashkari join from Goldman Sachs in 2009 and undertake a brief hiring spree and a series of product launches before stepping down in 2013.
Describing Kashkari as a ‘brilliant man’ on Bloomberg Radio, Gross said he did not expect Kashkari to make the cut, given Trump’s current thinking, but said: ‘Neel has great experience in terms of the Lehman crisis, we know that. He’s had experience at Goldman and he’s had experience at Pimco.
‘He’s got ideas that are a little bit different than other central bankers. He looks at the market a little bit different from a structural standpoint as opposed to a simple statistical standpoint. Yeah, he’s young. He’s only been there a year or two but he’d be my choice.’
The comments echoed those of Gundlach – a point Gross acknowledged as ‘strange’ – who had previously said Kashkari was the ideal ‘non-consensus choice’ for someone like Donald Trump.
During a market event last week, Gundlach said: ‘He happens to be the most easy money guy that's in the Federal Reserve system today and that's why he may win.’