Stripping disposable income from the middle class
It has long been acknowledged that taxing the private and corporate sectors removes money from the economy and places it at the disposal and direction of the public or government sector. This dampens free market activities. The government is left to allocate those monies as it sees fit.
When interest rates are held to zero, when fair market rates are depressed, when return on savings is denied, the arrangement is the same. The effects are the same. Although money doesn’t move to the government, as in taxation, it instead remains with the government. The federal debt, via treasuries and other government issued paper, no longer must be "serviced", (interest paid) at fair market rates of return. The net effect to the economy is the same as "taxation." Money that normally flows to the economy and into private hands does not. It remains with the government.
The much-discussed middle class has seen its disposable income continually decline. This de facto tax on savings, this removal of a fair market return on savings via Federal Reserve policy, is just one more minus in the disposable income column. Already affected by higher healthcare / insurance, college tuitions, real estate taxes, food and energy, the middle class must now do without a historically fair return on any savings they might have otherwise spent.
Round and round we go with a Federal Reserve chasing its own tail. Higher oil and food prices depress other retail sales readings and economic barometers. The Fed reacts by pumping, which results in depressing the dollar's value. The dollar buys less oil and food, prices rise, economic barometers decline, the Fed pumps. Rinse. Repeat.
If indeed the middle class could enjoy a return on savings, if its disposable income could indeed rise, the economic engine of a consumer with "money in his wallet" would bring back the consumption power missing from this economy.
So, Ms. Yellen, meet Mr. Newton. He will tell you that for every "economic" action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. The zero interest rate policy of the Federal Reserve, which has helped Wall Street, has also taken away money from the consumer that drives the economy. Allow fair rates to return and watch the economy, (maybe not the stock market) become revitalized. We have tried it your way for 6 years.