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Tag: Federal Reserve


AP / Charles Dharapak

Hey Michelle, Read My Book

On Tuesday, I received yet another deceptively personal e-mail addressed to “Robert” from Michelle Obama asking me once again to contribute to the “amazing journey” toward “progress” that her husband has led.

Posted on Oct 5, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Cliff Owen

The Big Guy’s on Our Side

Paul Volcker, or the “big guy,” as President Barack Obama refers to the former Federal Reserve chair who heads his Economic Recovery Advisory Board, nailed it in a series of blistering remarks on the sorry state of our economy.

Posted on Sep 28, 2010 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: Summers and Volcker, GOP Pledge, Taxes, Schools

This week on “Left, Right & Center,” the gang chats about the shakeup in Obama’s economic team, the GOP’s alleged new ideas, the Democrats’ spine on taxes, and the ever important but little-discussed issue of schools. Tune in to find out more.

Posted on Sep 25, 2010 READ MORE


Paul Volcker
AP / Wong Maye-E

Volcker Unloads on Nation’s Finance System

In a spare-no-one, off-the-cuff critique, former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker delivered a blistering analysis of the nation’s financial system Thursday, criticizing banks, regulators, business schools, the Fed and money-market funds in a “plea for structural changes in markets and market regulation.”

Posted on Sep 24, 2010 READ MORE


money
Flickr / yomanimus

U.S. Household Wealth Falls by $1.5 Trillion

This just in: U.S. households are getting poorer. As the crisis continues to wreak havoc on our economy, new data from the Federal Reserve tells us that U.S. net household worth has dropped $1.5 trillion in the second quarter of 2010 and is down more than $10 trillion since the recession began.

Posted on Sep 18, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Charles Dharapak

After Summers Comes the Fall

When will the president give Lawrence Summers his pink slip? He can thank him for his years of service and use the excuse that his top economic adviser wants to spend more time with his family. I don’t care how he sugarcoats it.

Posted on Sep 14, 2010 READ MORE



AP / J Pat Carter

It’s the Mortgages, Stupid

This week’s proposals by the Obama administration to deal with the persistent economic crisis will be, as with previous plans that involved trillions of taxpayer dollars, little more than salt in the wounds.

Posted on Sep 7, 2010 READ MORE



AP / Reed Saxon

Bernanke Makes Mildly Encouraging Noises About Economy

Is the recession over? Will there be another? Much like the famous groundhog from Punxsutawney, Federal Reserve chief Ben Bernanke showed up to offer an eagerly awaited sign—in this case to economists gathered Friday at Jackson Hole, Wyo., and to the world at large ... (continued)

Posted on Aug 27, 2010 READ MORE


washington
Flickr / jmlawlor

Fed Shifts to Bond-Buying Mode to Boost Economy

The Federal Reserve is taking action to try to give the flagging U.S. economy a much-needed jolt by committing to buy up some of the government’s debt in the form of long-term Treasury securities.

Posted on Aug 10, 2010 READ MORE


Bernanke
Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Federal Reserve

Bernanke Bears Bad News for the Jobless

Those out-of-work Americans hoping to hear something encouraging from the general direction of Capitol Hill wouldn’t like what Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke had to say to Congress on Wednesday.

Posted on Jul 21, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / Sister72 (CC-BY)

Paul Krugman Is Freaking Us Out

He’s a one-man downer, but mainly because he’s smart, credible and pulls no punches. In his latest New York Times column, the Nobel Prize winner warns that the Federal Reserve isn’t taking a negative enough view of the economy—with potentially dire consequences. Happy Monday to you, too, Paul.

Posted on Jul 11, 2010 READ MORE


Bernanke
Wikimedia Commons / U.S. Federal Reserve

Bernanke: Unemployment to Be ‘High for a While’

There are economic indicators that we want to be on the high end of the scale, but unemployment isn’t one of them. Unfortunately, according to Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, the U.S. unemployment rate ... (continued)

Posted on Jun 8, 2010 READ MORE


AIG sign

Senate Gives the Go-Ahead for Fed Lending Probe

When big financial institutions got themselves into a serious pickle in the fall of 2008, the Federal Reserve was there with beaucoup bucks in loans to prop them up. On Tuesday, the Senate voted unanimously to launch an inquiry into the Fed’s lending practices during the financial crisis.

Posted on May 11, 2010 READ MORE


Obama pointing
White House / Pete Souza

Obama Brushes Off GOP’s Bailout Claim, Pushes On With Financial Reform

Congressional Republicans are mobilizing for an assault on President Obama’s next regulatory project: financial reform. However, Obama’s not hearing it when it comes to the GOP’s claim that the Democrats’ current bill would make it easier for big financial institutions to angle for government bailouts down the line.

Posted on Apr 14, 2010 READ MORE


Greenspan
AP / J. Scott Applewhite

Greenspan Defends the Fed to Meltdown Commission

Former Fed chief Alan Greenspan faced the proverbial firing squad, or in this case the congressionally appointed Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, to answer questions Wednesday about his leadership choices at the Fed with regard to some key factors that triggered the financial implosion in 2008.

Posted on Apr 7, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / eflon

Regulating Too Big to Fail

Coming only a year too late to the party, Fed Chair Ben Bernanke has asserted that regulators must be “significantly tougher” on the large financial firms, arguing that the perception of those institutions as “too big to fail” threatens competition in the financial markets.

Posted on Mar 20, 2010 READ MORE


Dodd
AP / Susan Walsh

Lame Bill From a Lame Duck

If you think health care reform has been an unsatisfying test of the government’s ability to deal with our pressing problems, brace yourself for bigger disappointment in its attempt to bridle Wall Street. This is when the true heavies go to work, and, as opposed to the medical industry lobby, the moneychangers fear not the wrath of their clients or, as Scripture tells, any higher power.

Posted on Mar 16, 2010 READ MORE


Kohn
Wikimedia Commons / Federal Reserve

Fed’s Second in Command to Step Down

The Federal Reserve’s vice chairman, Donald L. Kohn, is ready to leave the building. Providing what could be a substantial opportunity for the Obama administration to change the central bank’s course, Kohn announced Monday that he’ll retire June 23, the official end date of his four-year term at the Fed.

Posted on Mar 1, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / antiparticle

Fed Looking Into Goldman Sachs’ Role in Greek Debt Crisis

It’s not the only financial institution involved, but Goldman Sachs features prominently among the companies that the Federal Reserve is investigating in relation to Greece’s recent debt calamity, Fed chief Ben Bernanke told the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday.

Posted on Feb 25, 2010 READ MORE


Treasury Department
AP / Evan Vucci

No Banker Left Behind

They do have a license to steal. There is no other way to read Tuesday’s report from the New York state comptroller that bonuses for Wall Street financiers rose 17 percent to $20.3 billion in 2009. Of course that is less than the $32.9 billion for bonus rewards back in 2007, when those hotshots could still pretend that they were running sound businesses. 

Posted on Feb 23, 2010 READ MORE


Bernanke
Wikimedia Commons / United States Federal Reserve

Fed to Raise Interest Rate

The Federal Reserve announced Thursday it would increase the interest rate for temporary bank loans. The New York Times reports that many on Wall Street see this as signaling an end to big bank profits. But some economists say the move was purely technical, with no real effect on how much money is made.

Posted on Feb 19, 2010 READ MORE


Volcker
AP / Gerald Herbert

Volcker Rules

Finally President Barack Obama has come to his senses on financial regulation. His endorsement of what he calls the “Volcker Rule” for once puts him squarely on the side of ordinary Americans as opposed to the banking bandits who have so thoroughly fleeced the public.

Posted on Feb 2, 2010 READ MORE


Bernanke
AP / Susan Walsh

Good Bernanke News Gives Wall Street a Boost

Well, it’s good news for Mr. Bernanke, at least: The U.S. stock market did better Monday than it had in the last three days of trading, thanks in part to signs that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s support in the Senate appeared solid. The sunny quarterly report from Apple Inc.—coming just days before the company was expected to make a major announcement—also helped reverse last week’s slide.

Posted on Jan 25, 2010 READ MORE



AP / J. Scott Applewhite

White House Pushes for Bernanke

With unemployment running at 10 percent and Wall Street bankers again pocketing big bonuses, many see Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s priorities as skewed. But absent from those critics is the White House, which believes Bernanke will be reconfirmed for a second term next week.

Posted on Jan 24, 2010 READ MORE


Paul Volcker
AP / Wong Maye-E

Paul Volcker to the Rescue

President Barack Obama might have done well to keep former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker in closer reach during his first year of office rather than rely on the dubious advice of Timothy Geithner and Lawrence Summers. Too late for that—but hopefully not too late for Volcker to help the president in his future dealings with Wall Street.

Posted on Jan 22, 2010 READ MORE



Flickr / eflon

Bernanke Offers Fed’s AIG Records to Gov’t Watchdogs

The Fed has nothing to hide about its dealings with AIG when it saved the too-big-to-fail insurance behemoth during the great bailout of 2008-9—or at least Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has signaled his full willingness to make the central bank’s relevant “records and personnel” available to investigators from the Government Accountability Office.

Posted on Jan 19, 2010 READ MORE


iBailout!
gametrailers.com

Now You Too Can Be Among the Powers That Be—Thanks to ‘iBailout!!’

Leave it to the good ol’ U.S. of A. to produce this sort of thing: An enterprising gaming company by the name of Hands-On Mobile has created an iPhone game that allows users to play the part of the money-gobbling Fed. In this digitized satire the Fed actually eats angry citizens. But fear not ... (continued)

Posted on Jan 5, 2010 READ MORE



Federal Reserve

Bernanke Wins Senate Panel’s Support

It’s been a good week for Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke. First came the news that he’d been chosen to be Time magazine’s Person of the Year, and then, on Thursday, the Senate Banking Committee voted to approve his nomination to lead the Fed for another four years.

Posted on Dec 17, 2009 READ MORE


Timothy Geithner
Wikimedia Commons / Presidencia de la Nación Argentina

Geithner Gives TARP an Extension

The Troubled Asset Relief Program, otherwise known as TARP, was scheduled to expire at the end of this year, but Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told Congress on Wednesday that it’ll stick around until October 2010, partly as a precautionary measure in case of economic emergency and partly to help struggling homeowners, banks and small businesses.

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


Colbert

‘Colbert Report’: Fed’s Dead

Do Americans really need to know how sausage gets made over at the Federal Reserve? As Stephen Colbert points out, there may be a little pig rectum in the mix, but as long as the Fed’s minions are allowed to perform their secret rituals, which may or may not involve ritual chicken slaughter, we all profit in the end, no?

Posted on Dec 9, 2009 READ MORE


Workers in Pain sign
Flickr / aficio2008

Don’t Look to D.C. to Help in Job Crisis

Talk of giving a much-needed jolt to the job market has petered out in the offices and chambers where something could actually be done about the country’s pervasive employment crisis. This priority problem in policy circles is unacceptable to economics whiz Paul Krugman, who proposes ideas to fill in the gaps.

Posted on Nov 30, 2009 READ MORE



Wikimedia Commons / Henry Han

Banks Gamble With Almost-Free Money

The Fed has been lending money at record-low rates, but instead of passing on the cash to businesses and consumers, big banks are rolling the dice in the financial markets. China and Japan have warned that these American high jinks could once again upend ... (continued)

Posted on Nov 24, 2009 READ MORE


Left, Right & Center

‘Left, Right & Center’: The Geithner-Summers Backlash; Is Palin Dangerous?

At long last, it seems that members of Congress, of left- and right-leaning persuasions alike, are harboring serious doubts about a couple of key players on President Barack Obama’s economic task force. The right-leaning Tony Blankley thinks that this signals the cyclical, and helpful, breakdown of hyper-partisanship on Capitol Hill. Meanwhile, Robert Scheer thinks Sarah Palin is still scary.

Posted on Nov 20, 2009 READ MORE



Flickr / eflon

Bernanke Signals Possible End to ‘Too Big to Fail’ Era

Those financial institutions that viewed last year’s bailout as an object lesson that they can carry on as they wish so long as they’re “too big to fail” may have to adopt another approach. At least, that was the message Monday from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, if he makes good on words of warning to big banks.

Posted on Nov 16, 2009 READ MORE



stltoday.com

Fed Restricts Overdraft Fees

Thank the regulatory heavens. The Federal Reserve is moving to prohibit banks from charging overdraft fees on ATM and debit card transactions unless the customer has opted into a program agreeing to pay the extra charges. Banks raked in $37 billion in fees last year, largely through unexplained programs and extraordinarily high levies.

Posted on Nov 12, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner
AP / Gerald Herbert

Public Health Before Wall Street Wealth

There is an odd disconnect between the furious public debate over health care reform, with its emphasis on the cost of an increased government role, and the nonexistent discussion about the far more expensive and largely secretive government program to bail out Wall Street.

Posted on Oct 13, 2009 READ MORE


Obama
AP / Charles Dharapak

Obama’s Presidency Isn’t Too Big to Fail

A president has only so much capital to expend, both in tax dollars and public tolerance, and Barack Obama is dangerously overdrawn. He has tried to have it all on three fronts, and his administration is in serious danger of going bankrupt.

Posted on Sep 15, 2009 READ MORE


Cash for Clunkers
Flickr / billaday

U.S. Economy Showing Signs of Life

A report released by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday gave some indications that, for half of the districts tracked by the Fed and for certain markets, the American economy is slowly starting to revive from its near-death experience last fall.

Posted on Sep 9, 2009 READ MORE


Bernanke
Wikimedia Commons / United States Federal Reserve

Bernanke Up for Round Two as Fed Chief

After heading up the Fed during the nation’s biggest economic catastrophe in decades, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke will be nominated to continue his role for a second term, according to another top Obama adviser, David Axelrod.

Posted on Aug 24, 2009 READ MORE



Federal Reserve

Bernanke Talks of Better Economic Times Ahead

After seemingly endless months of relentlessly distressing financial reports, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said Friday that the economic news is looking up on both the national and global economic fronts, and that “prospects for a return to growth in the near term appear good.”

Posted on Aug 21, 2009 READ MORE


Bernanke and Lehrer
kc.frb.org

Chairman Bernanke Explains It All

On Sunday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke met the media, or at least PBS “NewsHour” anchor Jim Lehrer, along with some concerned citizens of Kansas City, Mo., to discuss how the Fed has dealt with the ongoing economic catastrophe over the past few months.

Posted on Jul 26, 2009 READ MORE


ENTER_ALT_TEXT
AP / J. Scott Applewhite

Economic Decline May Have Slowed

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke presented a report Tuesday about the U.S. economy’s health. On the “bright side,” the economy appears to be declining at a slower rate than before, but home prices are still falling, credit is still very tight and, oh yeah, job losses are still rising. As a result of all the good news, the Fed intends to maintain “exceptionally low” interest rates for a while longer.

Posted on Jul 21, 2009 READ MORE


New York Fed Chairman Steps Down

Although he went down insisting that his relationship to Goldman Sachs had been “mischaracterized,” New York Federal Reserve Chairman Stephen Friedman resigned on Thursday after The Wall Street Journal, with a boost from Truthdig, brought up the issue of a potential conflict of interest earlier this week.

Posted on May 7, 2009 READ MORE


Obama and Geithner
AP photo / Ron Edmonds

Cashing In on ‘Government Sachs’

We are so inured to tales of business corruption that even a devastating exposé in The Wall Street Journal no longer shocks us. The fact that the chairman of the New York Federal Reserve Bank made millions off his secret purchase of Goldman Sachs stock has barely registered a blip of outrage. 

Posted on May 5, 2009 READ MORE


Bernanke
AP photo / Susan Walsh

Bernanke Gets Our Hopes Up

The good news: Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke believes the U.S. economy may show signs of bouncing back before 2010—yay! The bad news: Bernanke also believes that aftershocks from the recession may continue to wreak havoc for a good while to come—sigh.

Posted on May 5, 2009 READ MORE


toxic schmoxic
AP photo / Mary Altaffer

In for a Penny, In for $2.98 Trillion

The good news on the government’s “No Banker Left Behind” program is that, according to the special inspector general’s report on Tuesday, the total handout to date is still less than 3 trillion dollars. It’s only $2.98 trillion, to be precise, an amount six times greater than will be spent by federal, state and local governments this year on educating the 50 million American children in elementary and secondary schools. 

Posted on Mar 31, 2009 READ MORE


Bair
AP photo / Harry Hamburg

Courage Award Honors Two Women Who Warned Us

There has been much hand-wringing, not to mention finger-pointing, regarding who knew what, and when, about the financial calamities that have recently come to pass. However, Brooksley Born and Sheila Bair won’t be counted among the willfully or accidentally ignorant: They’ve been named this year’s winners of the JFK Profile in Courage Award for sounding the alarm far ahead of time.

Posted on Mar 28, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner and Bernanke
AP photo / Susan Walsh

Geithner Calls for More Authority After AIG Mess

In testifying before Congress on Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner asked for what he called “new resolution authority” to grant the federal government the ability to more successfully take on financial institutions like AIG (i.e., non-banks) in the future.

Posted on Mar 24, 2009 READ MORE


White House
Flickr/dcJohn

White House Looking to Curb Wall Street’s Excesses

Faced with the glaring problem of indulgence and intractability on the highest tiers of Wall Street’s corporate behemoths, the Obama administration is putting together a plan to make financial institutions more accountable and more transparent to the government and to the taxpayers who granted them buoyancy.

Posted on Mar 21, 2009 READ MORE


Geithner and Obama
AP photo / Gerald Herbert

And Now, This Tepid Message From Our Treasury Chief

We’ve seen a lot of Timothy Geithner lately in the news—usually looking concerned yet purposeful as he stands behind the president in photos and press conferences—but we haven’t heard a great deal straight from the source. On Thursday, CNN’s Ali Velshi managed to get the treasury secretary talking, but what Geithner had to say is distinctly underwhelming.

Posted on Mar 19, 2009 READ MORE


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