The Fed

Optimal Levels of Inflation

Update 535 — Optimal Levels of Inflation:What to Hope For and Expect in Recovery The May jobs report, out today, reflects an economy in transition, headed steadily toward recovery. U.S. employers added 559,000 jobs last month and the unemployment rate went down by 0.3 percent. The favorable trajectory still leaves open the length of recovery …

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Megabank CEOs Hit Hill

Update 534 — Megabank CEOs Hit Hill:Issues, Attacks Heard; Less So Consensus The CEOs of the six “megabanks” testified before the Senate Banking and House Financial Services Committees this week, addressing issues ranging from the pandemic response to climate risk to racial justice to wage disparities. Some questions arose concerning the banking sector itself but …

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Yellen Moves Markets

Update 527 — Yellen Moves MarketsAnd Can Remove FSOC Roadblocks The Federal Reserve surprised no one last Wednesday by continuing its near-zero interest rate policy and large-scale asset purchases. But markets tumbled Tuesday after Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen mentioned the possibility of raising rates, at some point, to prevent the economy from overheating.  In the …

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Powell Faces Fiscal, Macro Policy Potpourri

Update 516 — Support for Recovery (Act)?Powell Faces Fiscal, Macro Policy Potpourri Federal Reserve Chair Powell and Treasury Secretary Yellen both appeared before the House Financial Services (HFSC) yesterday and Senate Banking today. The main takeaway from them: the economic recovery needs additional federal support.  The ARP will boost the economy and the Fed projects …

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Another Budget Battle?

Update 490 — Another Budget Battle?Over What? And How Can the Fed Help? With days dwindling until the December 11 deadline for a budget deal needed to avert a government shutdown, Congress is negotiating yet another Continuing Resolution, which will alter federal spending priorities not at all as economic conditions continue to worsen. What’s the …

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A Barber on the Board

Update 489 – A Barber on the Board:Get Ready; Less Steady Fed Ahead? After months of inaction on Trump’s nomination of Judy Shelton to the Board of the Fed, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is rushing this one with days ticking down before Senator-elect Mark Kelly can be sworn in. Shelton’s nomination as a national …

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Monetary Policy Reimagined

Update 474: Monetary Policy ReimaginedWhat the Fed’s Momentous Moves Mean With no recent fiscal action from Congress, all eyes have been on the Federal Reserve. Leery of criticism of TARP and other financial policy responses during the Great Recession, the Fed recently announced a series of new changes to its approach. These changes may augur …

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$260bn+ in CARES Unused

Update 472: $260bn+ in CARES Unused; A Fiscal Fix for Fed Facility Failures? $454 billion was provided in the CARES Act enacted in March, the biggest corporate assistance package since TARP. Today, $259 billion remains uncommitted. All the while, fiscal relief has run out and the American people are suffering. While the $259 billion sits idle, …

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Additional Testing Required

Update 450 — Additional Testing Required:What to Expect from the Fed’s Stress Tests In a month, we will celebrate the 10th anniversary of the signing of the Dodd-Frank Act, which codified annual Federal Reserve stress testing of major financial institutions to see if they can withstand various hypothetical macroeconomic hardships. No one contemplated COVID then, …

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