DoubleLine's Gundlach says 'central banks are losing control'

Tue Jun 14, 2016 6:38pm EDT
 
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By Jennifer Ablan

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Jeffrey Gundlach, the chief executive of DoubleLine Capital, said on Tuesday investors are dropping risky assets and turning to safer securities including Treasuries and gold because they are losing faith in central banks.

The man known on Wall Street as the 'Bond King' is one of the first heavyweight investors to publicly raise red flags about the credibility of major central banks, including the U.S. Federal Reserve, as countries struggle to manage economic growth.

Last year, Gundlach correctly predicted that oil prices would plunge, junk bonds would live up to their name and China's slowing economy would pressure emerging markets. In 2014, he forecast U.S. Treasury yields would fall, not rise as many others had expected.

"Central banks are losing control and they don't know what to do ... just like the Republican establishment and Donald Trump," Gundlach told Reuters in a telephone interview, referring to the Republic Party's unpredictable presumptive nominee for U.S. President.

Safe-haven German Bund yields fell below zero on Tuesday for the first time and global equity markets slid for a fourth day in a row on intensifying worries about a potential British exit from the European Union next week.

Gundlach's remarks come the day before U.S. Federal Reserve officials are widely expected to leave short-term interest rates unchanged following a dismal May jobs report.

"The Fed is confused and their confusion spills into investor psychology," said Gundlach, who oversees more than $100 billion at Los Angeles-based DoubleLine. 

"The Fed changes its tone so frequently, it seems every other week the message is different. They’ve turned into the 'Zombie Fed.' They say the meeting this week is 'live,' but investors all know it isn't at all."   Continued...

 
Jeffrey Gundlach, Chief Executive Officer, DoubleLine Capital LP., speaks at the Sohn Investment Conference in New York City, U.S. May 4, 2016.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermid