Federal Reserve

The Economist  17 min ago  Comment 
SCARCELY is one Federal Reserve meeting over before the doves and hawks start circling again. The hawks, who hope for a rate increase, had some unlikely companions in their flock in the run-up to the September meeting: central bankers from India,...
Reuters  3 hrs ago  Comment 
Gold extended losses to a fifth session on Thursday, falling to a fresh two-week low, as strong U.S. private-sector jobs data bolstered views the Federal Reserve will hike rates this year.
Mondo Visione  5 hrs ago  Comment 
SIFMA President and CEO Kenneth E. Bentsen, Jr. delivered opening remarks and introduced the Federal Reserve Bank of New York’s President and CEO William C. Dudley at the SIFMA Liquidity Forum in New York.
The Hindu Business Line  6 hrs ago  Comment 
Gold was trading near its lowest in two weeks on Thursday after a four-day losing streak, as strong US private-sector jobs data bolstered views that the Federal Reserve will hike rates this year.
Clusterstock  10 hrs ago  Comment 
US prosecutors have started an insider-trading investigation into a leak from the Federal Reserve in 2012, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cites people familiar with the matter. The investigation is looking in to Medley Global...
Clusterstock  12 hrs ago  Comment 
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. prosecutors in New York have launched an insider-trading probe into a leak of sensitive information from the Federal Reserve in 2012, the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the...
Forbes  Sep 30  Comment 
On Wednesday afternoon, the Federal Reserve said it finally approved M&T's acquisition of Hudson City, a merger that will create a lender with $132.5 billion in assets and deposits of $90 billion.
Clusterstock  Sep 30  Comment 
Markets have been struggling every since the Federal Reserve's decision not to raise the Federal funds interest rate, but there has been one winner: gold. According to analysts at RBC Capital Markets, the recent jump in gold prices has been in...
Wall Street Journal  Sep 30  Comment 
The long-delayed merger between M&T Bank and Hudson City Bancorp was approved by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday, clearing a major hurdle to the deal’s completion.
Yahoo  Sep 30  Comment 
U.S. companies hired workers at a solid clip in September, but data showed factory activity in the U.S. Midwest contracted, muddying the economic picture for the Federal Reserve on whether to raise interest rates later this year. U.S. private...


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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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