Tag Archives: The FED

House Votes Overwhelmingly to Audit the Fed!

ron paul

Good news for a change…

WASHINGTON, July 24 – Congressman Ron Paul today applauded the passage by the House of Representatives of H.R. 459, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act.  The bill, which calls for a full audit of the Federal Reserve System– including its lending facilities and critical monetary policy operations– passed overwhelmingly by a bipartisan vote of 327-98.

“I am very pleased that the House passed my Audit the Fed legislation today,” Congressman Paul stated.  “It has been a long, hard fight, but Congress finally is getting serious about exercising its oversight responsibility over the Federal Reserve.  Auditing the Fed is a common sense issue supported by the overwhelming majority of the American people.  The Fed’s trillions of dollars worth of asset purchases and its ongoing support of foreign central banks cannot be allowed to continue without Congressional oversight.  Today’s passage of H.R. 459 is a good first step towards full Fed transparency, and I hope that the Senate will consider the bill before the end of the year.”

Cheers!

Alan

Failed Fed Policies Prolong the Agony

ron paul

The Federal Reserve’s interest rate price-setting board, the FOMC, met last week.  They will continue to set the federal funds rate at well below 1%, and plan to keep it low until the end of 2014.  That’s a year and half longer than they planned when they met just last month.  Chairman Bernanke says they are keeping interest rates so low for so long because the economic outlook warrants it.

The fallacies in their reasoning would be amusing if they weren’t so dangerous.  The Fed wants to keep the price of money at essentially zero – in other words “free” – to boost the economy.  But the boost they are attempting won’t get here for another three years.  That’s not a recovery.  And we’ve already tried this tactic.  That’s how we got into this mess in the first place: with interest rates artificially low for a very long time.  Free money doesn’t stimulate growth, as Japan’s two lost decades clearly show.  Artificially low interest rates only serve to punish saving, distort market signals, and cause further malinvestment.  They also do nothing to address the only real solution to our economic woes: liquidation of the bad debt that hangs around the neck of the world’s economy, preventing recovery.  Artificially low interest rates merely ensure that we remain a debt-financed consumer economy guaranteed to end up with a weaker economy and higher prices.

What baffles me even more is that two decades after the collapse of Soviet planning and decades more since the U.S. and economists purportedly rejected the idea of price setting, we find nothing wrong with the Fed setting the price of money.  We all agree it is a bad idea to have a board saying the price of wheat should be $250 a ton today, or carpenters wages should be $25 an hour until the end of 2014.  But we are perfectly comfortable with having a board set the price of one half of every transaction in our economy.  And our markets are supposedly free.

The Fed policies of low interest rates, Operation Twist, and rounds of quantitative easing are all attempts to keep the economy alive artificially. But the 12 FOMC participants cannot manage the economy any better than the bureaucrats of the Soviet Union.  The policies haven’t worked. They won’t work. Real economic recovery cannot come until we liquidate the bad debt, until we eradicate the poor decisions we made over the last decade, and start with a sound foundation. It is time we acknowledge the truth of the Fed’s activities: they are merely using fancy words for price setting.

Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon was correct in the 1920s when he said “liquidate everything.”  That’s what we did in the severe depression of 1920-21, and we recovered so quickly it is never even talked about.  We didn’t take his advice after the 1929 crash, and ended up with the Great Depression.  We are committing the same mistakes, destined to live in this Great Recession for a decade or more—it has already been four years, the Fed says it will be at least three more!  It’s time we start rethinking what the Fed’s policies are really doing to our economy, because obviously, by their own admission, they haven’t helped.

Ron Paul

The Fed Undermines Foreign Policy

ron paul

By: Dr. Ron Paul, U.S. Congressman

Last week I was both surprised and pleased when the Supreme Court upheld lower court decisions requiring the Federal Reserve Bank to comply with requests for information made by Bloomberg under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”). Bloomberg simply wanted to know who received loans from the Fed’s discount window in the aftermath of the 2008 financial market crisis, and how much each entity received.  Surely this is basic information that should be available to every American taxpayer.  But the Fed fought tooth and nail all the way to the Supreme Court to preserve their privileged secrecy.  However, transparency and openness won the day.  There are some 29,000 pages to decipher, but a few points stand out initially.

The Fed lent huge sums of our money to foreign banks.  This in itself was not surprising, but the actual amount is staggering!  In one week at the height of the crisis, about 70% of the money doled out went to foreign banks.  We were told that bailing out banks was going to stave off a massive depression.  Depression for whom?  We now know that the Fed’s bailout had nothing to do with helping the American people, who have gotten their depression anyway with continued job losses and foreclosures.  But now we learn that a good deal of the money did not even help American banks!

In light of recent world events, perhaps the most staggering revelation is that quite a bit of money went to the Arab Banking Corp., in which the Libyan Central Bank owned about a third of its stock.  This occurred while Libya, a declared state sponsor of terrorism, was under strict economic sanctions!  How erratic the US must appear when we shower a dictator alternately with dollars and bombs!  Also, we must consider the possibility that those loans are inadvertently financing weapons Gaddaffi is using against his own people and western militaries.   This would not be the first time the covert activities of the Fed have undermined not only our economy and the value of the dollar, but our foreign policy as well.

Of course I can’t say I’m surprised by the poor quality of the data provided by the Fed.  The category of each loan made, whether from the “Primary Discount Window”, the “Secondary Discount Window,” or “Other Extensions of Credit,” is redacted.  Thus, we don’t know with certainty how much discount window lending was provided to foreign banks and how much was merely “other extensions of credit”.  Also, some of the numbers simply do not seem to add up.  We are of course still wading through the massive document dump, but it does seem as though several billions of dollars are unaccounted for.

As the world economy continues to falter in spite of – or rather because of – cheap money doled out by the Federal Reserve, its ability to deceive financial markets and American taxpayers is coming to an end.  People are beginning to realize that when the fed in effect doubles the worldwide supply of US dollars in a relatively short time, it has the effect of stealing half your money through reduced purchasing power.  Rapid inflation will continue as trillions in new money and credit recently created by the Fed flood into the commodity markets.

It is becoming more and more obvious that the Fed operates for the benefit of a few privileged banks, banks that never suffer for bad decisions they make.  Quite the opposite – as we have seen since October 2008, under our current monetary system politically-connected banks are paid to make bad decisions.

What Most People Don’t Realize About The Federal Reserve’s Superpowers

Bob Prechter’s Conquer The Crash reveals whether the Fed really can rescue the US economy

By Elliott Wave International

Since its creation in 1913, the primary intended role of the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank has been that of protector. In theory, the central bank was bestowed with the power to shape monetary policy in a way that would keep both booms and busts in check. The two main tools at its disposal — interest rates and money creation — would provide a “ceiling of normalcy” above expansions AND a “net of safety” below contractions.

To this day, the financial mainstream holds great faith in the Fed’s ability to fulfill its save-the-day duties — as these recent news items make plain:

  • “Why Raising Fed Funds Rate Is Positive For Equities.” (Seeking Alpha)
  • “Fed’s Moves Lift All Asset Classes.” (Associated Press)
  • “US Stocks Erasing Losses: The aggressive moves of the Fed have been an important driver for the stabilization of stock prices.” (Bloomberg)

But of all the variables the Fed creators took into account, there’s one glaring factor they neglected to consider: Namely, it cannot force consumers to spend, creditors to lend, or businesses to borrow. The events of 2007-2009 “credit crunch” and the subsequent “Great Recession” made that obvious. Remember how the government was upset at banks for sitting on the bailout funds instead of lending them out to consumers? And consumers weren’t exactly lining up on the street to get a loan, either.

The Fed’s inability to change social mood is the central theme in Chapter 13 of EWI President Bob Prechter’s NY Times business bestseller book Conquer the Crash. There, Bob describes the Fed’s strategy of lowering the federal funds rate to stimulate spending to be as effective as “pushing on a string.” Writes Bob:

“The primary basis for today’s belief in perpetual prosperity and inflation with an occasional recession is what I call the ‘Potent Directors Fallacy.’ It is nearly impossible to find a treatise on macroeconomics today that does not assert or assume that the Federal Reserve Board has learned to control both our money and our economy. Many believe that it also possesses the immense power to manipulate the stock market. The very idea that it can do these things is false.”

And so begins one of the most groundbreaking studies into the very real INABILITY of the Fed to fell the great bears of economic declines, or to feed the great bulls of economic vigor.

The best part is, you can read Chapter 13 of Conquer the Crash in its entirety FREE via a Club EWI resource “You Can Survive And Prosper In A Deflationary Depression.” The free report also includes SEVEN other chapters of Conquer the Crash that shed equal light on some of the most misleading notions of mainstream economic wisdom.

Don’t stay in the dark. Read all 8 chapters today by joining the rapidly expanding free Club EWI community today. Here’s what you’ll learn:

  • Chapter 10: Money, Credit and the Federal Reserve Banking System
  • Chapter 13: Can the Fed Stop Deflation?
  • Chapter 23: What To Do With Your Pension Plan
  • Chapter 28: How to Identify a Safe Haven
  • Chapter 29: Calling in Loans and Paying off Debt
  • Chapter 30: What You Should Do If You Run a Business
  • Chapter 32: Should You Rely on Government to Protect You?
  • Chapter 33: A Short List of Imperative “Do’s” and Crucial “Don’ts”

Keep reading this free report now — all you need to do is create a free Club EWI profile.

This article was syndicated by Elliott Wave International and was originally published under the headline Basic Wave Patterns: How a Zigzag Differs from a Flat. EWI is the world’s largest market forecasting firm. Its staff of full-time analysts led by Chartered Market Technician Robert Prechter provides 24-hour-a-day market analysis to institutional and private investors around the world.

Ron Paul – Recipe for a Successful 2011

Ron Paul

The year 2011 brings in a host of opportunities and challenges to America. Will we accelerate toward economic insolvency by continuing the policies that have created this crisis, or will a new Congress elected on the energy of the Tea Party movement find the courage to change course?

With the new Republican majority in the House I will have the opportunity as a subcommittee chairman to take a careful look at our domestic monetary policy. I am excited by the prospect of real oversight of the Federal Reserve, but I also hope to focus on the important ways in which our foreign policy and monetary policy are related. Just last week the Financial Times reported that the limited oversight of the Federal Reserve allowed by the passage of a watered-down version of my Audit the Fed bill revealed that approximately 55 percent of the loans made available under the largest Federal Reserve bailout program, the Term Auction Facility, went to foreign banks! This is but one example of the real cost to Americans of maintaining its empire overseas, and it cries out for more transparency and oversight.

This is why it is key for us to understand that our foreign policy and current economic crisis go hand in hand. Some have promised to lead us back to fiscal responsibility while asserting that any reduction in our foreign and military spending is off the table. They would like us to believe that we should not only continue spending as much on the military as the rest of the world combined, but they actually call for an even more aggressive US policy abroad. They believe we should continue to bomb Pakistan, Yemen, Afghanistan, and elsewhere; that we must impose even more crippling sanctions on countries like Iran while moving steadily on to yet another Middle East war that is not in our interest. They represent the failed policies of the past and they would like to lead us down a dead-end street. We must resist the temptation of their neo-con inspired scare-mongering.

There will be much work for us to do in the next year and in the next Congress. We need look no further than the grossly unconstitutional and immoral policies of the Transportation Security Administration – demanding that we either be irradiated or fondled to travel in our own country – to see that those who would deprive us of our civil liberties on the empty promise of full security will not be giving up easily. We must continue standing up to them and we must not compromise. We must not allow the out-of-control Department of Homeland Security to impose an East German-like police state in the US, where neighbors are encouraged by big brother or big sister to inform on their neighbors. We must not accept that government authorities should hector us via television screens as we go about our private lives like we are living in Orwell’s 1984.

I am optimistic that the incoming Members of Congress understand the importance of what they have been entrusted with by the American people. But I do hope that those who elected them will watch their actions — and their votes in Congress – carefully. An early indication will be the upcoming vote on re-authorization of the anti-American PATRIOT Act. Defeat once and for all of this police-state legislation will be a great way to start 2011 and the 112th Congress.  We must move ahead with confidence. Our numbers are growing.  Happy New Year!

Ron Paul

Syndicated by Alan’s Money Blog:

http://alansmoneyblog.com