What is the Federal Reserve system?

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In summary, the federal reserve is a banking cartel which functions as an agent of the federal government. It is different then private banking and direct government central banking, and it is important to understand the idea of banking and money before trying to understand the federal reserve.
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I thought it was a government agency.

So, is it a government agency? No.

Is it a private banking corporation?

According to G Edward Griffin it is a hybrid, a banking cartel.

Here's G Edward Griffin in this video: http://megamata.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=42#p497

Look at the bottom of the webpage where it reads: Creature From Jekyll Island A Second Look at the Federal Reserve
 
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Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation on the subject, much of it by people who deeply misunderstand modern economics.

My best description would be that, like most cenbanks, the Federal Reserve is an academic nonprofit.
 
  • #3
BenVitale said:
I thought it was a government agency.

So, is it a government agency? No.

Is it a private banking corporation?
The short answer is that it is a bank which serves as an agent of the federal government, so as a practical matter, it's equivalent to a federal agency.
 
  • #4
Although Griffin is prone to conspiracy mongering, his basic descriptions of the federal reserve are correct.

In order to better understand the federal reserve system, it might be useful to look at how it is different then what came before (i.e., private banking and direct government central banking) and also understand the idea of banking and money in general.

There is also some confusion as to the term federal reserve. All american banks are part of the federal reserve system, but when people refer to the "fed" they are usually talking about the board of governors and the central branch banks.

These are not for profit, although there is some complication, as the people who lead the board of governors and the branch banks come from the world of for profit banking, and hypothetically their decisions could benefit them, although direct benefit is not legal. Then again, much of what the board of governors decides to do is "secret" in several senses. The motivation for this has to do with keeping central banking decisions independent from short term political concerns.
 
  • #5
by G. Edward Griffin

The Federal Reserve system is a central banking system in the United States that was created in 1913 through the Federal Reserve Act. It is responsible for conducting monetary policy, regulating and supervising banks, and providing financial services to the government and financial institutions. While it is often referred to as a government agency, it is actually a hybrid entity that is composed of both public and private components.

The Federal Reserve is made up of three main entities: the Board of Governors, 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks, and the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). The Board of Governors is a government-appointed body that oversees the entire system and sets monetary policy. The 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks serve as the central banks for their respective regions and carry out the policies set by the Board of Governors. The FOMC is responsible for setting interest rates and managing the supply of money in the economy.

While the Federal Reserve is subject to oversight by Congress and the President, it is not a government agency in the traditional sense. It is a unique entity that operates independently from the government, but also has government representation and accountability. This structure was intentionally designed to balance the need for an independent central bank with the need for government involvement in the monetary system.

In summary, the Federal Reserve system is a complex and important institution in the United States that plays a crucial role in the economy. It is not a simple government agency, but rather a hybrid entity that operates independently while also being accountable to the government.
 

1. What is the Federal Reserve system?

The Federal Reserve system, also known as the Federal Reserve or simply the Fed, is the central banking system of the United States. It was created by Congress in 1913 to provide a stable and flexible monetary and financial system for the country.

2. How does the Federal Reserve system work?

The Federal Reserve system works by setting monetary policy, supervising and regulating banks, and providing financial services to banks, the government, and the public. It is composed of 12 regional Federal Reserve Banks, a Board of Governors, and a Federal Open Market Committee.

3. Who owns the Federal Reserve system?

The Federal Reserve system is owned by the member banks of the Federal Reserve. These banks are required to hold stock in their regional Federal Reserve Bank, and this stock cannot be traded or sold. The stock provides the member banks with a dividend each year.

4. What is the role of the Federal Reserve system in the economy?

The Federal Reserve system plays a crucial role in the economy by controlling the money supply and interest rates. It also acts as a lender of last resort to banks, provides financial services to the government, and works to ensure the stability of the financial system.

5. How is the Federal Reserve system held accountable?

The Federal Reserve system is held accountable through a variety of measures. The Board of Governors is appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate, making it accountable to the government. The Fed is also audited by an independent auditor and regularly reports to Congress. Additionally, its actions are closely monitored by financial markets and the public.

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