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This week Fed presidents have set the table for Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell’s Friday morning speech at the Jackson Hole central bankers’ conference. But it’s not clear that the financial markets are eating off the same menu. (I bought a box of metaphors this week at a 2-for-1 sale and I have to use them before they go bad.)

Those Fed presidents keep saying that interest rates need to go up and go up hard. On Wednesday alone, both Kansas City Fed President Esther George and Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said rates need to be lifted into restrictive territory.

On Thursday, however, ahead of Powell’s remarks on interest rate policy, stocks rallied. The Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 1.41%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.98%. The NASDAQ Composite rose 1.67%. And the small-cap Russell 2000 was higher by 1.52%. Stocks, in other words, acted like Powell would signal that the Federal Reserve would soon move to a less aggressive schedule of interest rate increases.

Whatever Powell says Friday morning, the Fed has always scheduled a big increase to its program to run down the size of its balance sheet by not replacing Treasury bonds in its portfolio that have matured. The rate at which the Fed will reduce its balance sheet will climb to a maximum of $95 million a month in September from the current cap of $47.5 billion. That’s substantial tightening by itself.