Federal Reserve

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Mondo Visione  2 hrs ago  Comment 
The Federal Reserve Board on Thursday extended until April 3 the comment period for its proposed rule to implement capital surcharges for the largest, most systemically important U.S. bank holding companies. The proposed rule would establish a...
TheStreet.com  5 hrs ago  Comment 
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The Federal Reserve won't be raising interest rates this year or for "the foreseeable future," said Dr. Srinivas Thiruvadanthai, director of research for the Jerome Levy Forecasting Center.  Global economies, especially...
Yahoo  6 hrs ago  Comment 
Jim O'Sullivan, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics, isn't yet completely convinced that Janet Yellen's Fed will begin raising rates in June. "The idea that the economy is so fragile that it can't take a rate hike? He doesn't believe...
Wall Street Journal  6 hrs ago  Comment 
A slight pickup in the Labor Department’s measure of core inflation in January won’t be enough to send an all-clear signal to the Federal Reserve.
Clusterstock  9 hrs ago  Comment 
Most US economic data missed expectations in February. And that investors are sending stocks to all-time highs is making Societe Generale's Albert Edwards crazy. In a note Thursday, Edwards wrote: "With equity markets galore hitting record...
Wall Street Journal  10 hrs ago  Comment 
A measure of U.S. consumer prices fell in January from a year earlier, marking the first annual decline in more than five years and potentially complicating the calculus for when the Federal Reserve will lift interest rates.
Yahoo  Feb 26  Comment 
Over two days of testimony to Congress, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen was grilled on everything from the direction of interest rates to the health of the economy to "Audit the Fed" legislation ...
The Hindu Business Line  Feb 26  Comment 
Asian shares prices edged away from five-month highs on Thursday, while the dollar steadied after slipping on Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s indication that the US central bank is in no hurr...




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The Federal Reserve is the third central bank of the USA. It was legally established on December 23, 1913, when US president Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve System Act. The Federal Reserve was blamed to have deepened the Great Depression after the crash of 1929. In a panicky reaction it then deflated money supply, causing a lasting and deep economic contraction.

In the inflationary period from 1973 - caused by the first oil shock - to 1981 chairman Paul Volcker managed to battle inflation successfully by raising the leading interest rate to more than 20%. At the same time Volcker succeeded in keeping the economy out of a drawn-out recession.

The policy style changed with the nomination of Alan Greenspan in 1987. Only 2 months into office Greenspan was confronted with the Black Monday of 1987, when the Dow Jones Industrials Average fell 22%, its biggest loss ever in a day. Remembering the fatal results of tight liqudity after the crash of 1929 Greenspan offered banks all the funds they needed in order to avoid a meltdown of the stock market. Alan Greenspan can also be credited with blowing up the biggest debt bubble of all times in the new millennium. By lowering the Fed Funds rate to a record low of 1% the Federal Reserve contributed heavily to the American housing boom that turned out to be a bubble based on easy credit. Greenspan conceded in 2008 to Congress that he erred on wrong side when the Federal Reserve thought that the financial industry should not be burdened with more oversight. At this time the USA had fallen in the biggest financial crisis ever.

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The Federal Reserve Banks

The 12 Federal Reserve Banks were established by Congress as the operating arms of the nation's central banking system. Many of the services provided to depository institutions and the federal government by this network of Reserve Banks are similar to services provided by commercial banks and thrift institutions to business customers and individuals.

Reserve Banks

  • hold the cash reserves of depository institutions and make loans to them
  • move currency and coin into and out of circulation, and collect and process millions of checks each day
  • provide checking accounts for the Treasury, issue and redeem government securities, and act in other ways as fiscal agent for the U.S. government
  • supervise and examine commercial banks that are members of the Federal Reserve System for safety and soundness
  • participate in the activity that is the primary responsibility of the Federal Reserve System, the setting of monetary policy.
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