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What Is the Federal Open Market Committee and What Does It Do?

What Is the Federal Open Market Committee? How Does It Work?The central bank of the United States is known as the Federal Reserve. While it operates independently…



FOMC is short for Federal Open Market Committee.

pabradyphoto for iStockphoto; Canva

What Is the Federal Open Market Committee? How Does It Work?

The central bank of the United States is known as the Federal Reserve. While it operates independently of the federal government and has no political affiliation, it may be one of the most powerful committees in the world. The Federal Reserve, or the Fed, as it’s known for short, is responsible for ensuring a strong American economy and healthy levels of employment by managing fiscal policies.

Most people know the Fed as being synonymous with interest rates—particularly when they go up. But the Fed does so much more than that.

There are three main things the Fed is responsible for:

  1. Managing open market operations by buying Treasury securities to increase market liquidity
  2. Raising, lowering, or maintaining the fed funds rate
  3. Setting reserve requirements for banks

Bank reserve requirements and interest rates are maintained by the Fed’s Board of Governors. Open market operations are overseen by its Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC).

How Is the Fed Structured?

The Fed is composed of three parts:

  1. A Board of Governors, helmed by a Fed Chair
  2. 12 Federal Reserve Banks, which represent a different geographic area of the U.S.
  3. The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC)

Who Serves on the Federal Open Market Committee? What Do They Do?

The FOMC’s role in overseeing open market operations includes providing regular economic updates to the public and managing monetary policy.

The FOMC is made up of a dozen members:

  • The 7 members of the Board of Governors, including the Fed Chair
  • The President of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, who is also the Vice President of the Fed
  • 4 Federal Reserve Bank members, who serve a one-year term on a rotating basis, with representation from each of the following groups: 

i) Boston, Philadelphia, and Richmond

ii) Cleveland and Chicago

iii) Atlanta, St. Louis, and Dallas

iv) Minneapolis, Kansas City, and San Francisco

When Does the FOMC Meet? When Is the Next FOMC Meeting?

The FOMC meets eight times per year. The rest of its 2022 meetings are:

  • May 3–4, 2022
  • June 14–15, 2022
  • July 26–27, 2022
  • September 20–21, 2022
  • November 1–2, 2022
  • December 13–14, 2022

To find out when its 2023 meetings will be scheduled, visit the FOMC’s calendar page.

Who Currently Serves on the FOMC?

Since 2018, Jerome “Jay” Powell has served as the Chair of the Federal Reserve. Fed Chairs serve four-year terms, although Powell was recently re-appointed and confirmed for a second term, which will expire in 2028.

The rest of the current FOMC members are:

  • John C. Williams, New York, Vice Chair
  • Michelle W. Bowman, Board of Governors
  • Lael Brainard, Board of Governors
  • James Bullard, St. Louis
  • Esther L. George, Kansas City
  • Loretta J. Mester, Cleveland
  • Christopher J. Waller, Board of Governors

What Is the Main Thing the FOMC Decides?

The FOMC monitors the U.S. economy nonstop. Every six weeks at its FOMC meeting, it presents its outlook and adjusts interest rates accordingly. However, these are not the interest rates people use when taking out a car loan or a mortgage—those rates follow the prime rate, which is set by their banks.

Rather, the FOMC sets the fed funds rate, which is a target rate of interest that banks use to lend money to each other. The Fed may raise or lower the fed funds rate as a way to encourage lending, curb inflation, or generally ensure a strong and healthy economy.

What Are FOMC Minutes? When Are They Released?

On the final day of the FOMC meeting, the Fed publishes a short policy statement. Three weeks later, it publishes a full set of meeting minutes. These records are publicly available and can be accessed via the FOMC's minutes archive.

How Does the FOMC Increase the Monetary Supply?

When the Fed lowers the reserve requirement for a bank, it effectively creates more liquidity in the financial markets, thus increasing the monetary supply. Its Treasury security buybacks also increase reserves, putting more cash back into circulation. After the 2007-2008 Financial Crisis, the FOMC began a series of quantitative easing measures, designed to keep interest rates low and help spur growth. These measures were kept in place through 2015, but after the COVID-19 pandemic caused the economy to briefly tailspin into a recession, the Fed once again began buying back Treasuries from March-June 2020, although critics contend these actions also helped spur inflation.

What Is the FOMC’s Inflation Forecast?

TheStreet’s Dan Weil believes that while Russia’s invasion of Ukraine will increase commodity prices, it wouldn't deter the Fed from raising interest rates at its March FOMC meeting.

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Asian currencies see falling data amid global conflict

Data on the Chinese yuan notes that lifting Covid-19 restrictions earlier this year has not boosted business transactions as much previously predicted,…



Data on the Chinese yuan notes that lifting Covid-19 restrictions earlier this year has not boosted business transactions as much previously predicted, with the yuan falling 0.1% this week. Its third-quarter gross domestic product data is due later this week, which may shed some light on China’s subdued economic growth and inflexible lending rates.

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James Malcolm Source: LinkedIn

James Malcolm, head of FX strategy at UBS London, observed the slowing signs of the yen and the Bank of Japan’s necessary intervention, all as a result of the Palestine conflict and Russia-Ukraine war:

Obviously, war is inflationary; [it] disrupts growth and threatens risk assets. […] The largest overhang I can see in this regard is dollar-yen, where the BOJ must pivot regardless, and the carry trade that has built up now amounts to nearly half a trillion dollars.

Despite the weakening of its peers, the Indian rupee remained relatively stable on Monday against the US dollar, with the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) stabilising local oil prices throughout the nation. According to experts, it seems that the RBI may have intervened on Friday to prevent the rupee from slipping as low as its Asian counterparts; however, all Asian currencies now await economic data from the US Federal Reserve regarding interest rate hikes and global inflation levels.

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Did The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Just Sink Ukraine As A Warhawk Darling?

Did The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Just Sink Ukraine As A Warhawk Darling?

By most accounts from the front and according to the strategic…



Did The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Just Sink Ukraine As A Warhawk Darling?

By most accounts from the front and according to the strategic information currently on hand, the war in Ukraine is all but over and Russia has essentially won.  Russia continues to occupy at least 20% of Ukrainian lands and has solidified its lines.  As expected, Ukraine's much hyped counteroffensive was hot air and it is clear that their ability to field combat ready soldiers has been greatly diminished.  Without an offensive capable military, Ukraine has nothing left except whatever mid range arms NATO gives them to harass Russian forces to minimal effect.  All Putin has to do is bide his time until the money and weapons run out.  

But even worse still for Zelensky and friends is the fact that the propaganda machine driving western sentiment and monetary support is quickly dying.  Admissions of “war fatigue” among Americans and Europeans are beginning to surface and majority support for further funding has ended.  Without a clear outline of what victory in Ukraine actually looks like, and with many in the west facing stagflationary crisis, enthusiasm has floundered.  It should also be noted that the war in Ukraine never garnered any meaningful American support for the deployment of troops, and for good reason.

No one wants to jump headlong into WWIII.

With Ukraine becoming the ugly girl at the school dance, the attention of establishment warhawks (Neo-cons and Democrats) has swiftly shifted over to Israel, much to the dismay of Zelensky.  The Ukrainian leader warned in an interview with a France 2 broadcaster:

"There is a risk that international attention will turn away from Ukraine, and that will have consequences...”

Zelensky has desperately tried to associate Ukraine with Israel as if the two nations are engaged in the same fight.  He even went as far as to insinuate that Vladimir Putin was the mastermind behind the destabilization of the Middle East and insisted that NATO funding packages for Israel should be tied to funding packages for Ukraine. 

Let's not forget how disjointed and strange a Ukraine/Israel association would be, given Ukraine's Nazi leanings.  This is the same government that actually invited a real life Nazi SS officer to be applauded by Canada's parliament as a war hero just last month.  The disconnect may be the reason why the Israelis rejected military aid to Ukraine for so long.     

The Biden Administration is running with the multi-war package idea, asking Congress to approve additional funding for Ukraine, but attaching it to a plan which would include funding for Israel, Taiwan, and US border security.  In other words, if conservatives want the border to be protected, they must agree to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on two ongoing war fronts as well as a third potential front with China.

It is highly unlikely according to officials on both sides of the aisle that this will succeed.  But, when the establishment piles on a host of different projects into a single funding plan, it is usually because this allows them to enter into false negotiations.  That is to say, there are certain projects they actually want and others they don't care about.  They cut the funding programs they never intended to keep so that congress can feel like they gained something in the bargain.  The question is, which war do they really want to fund, knowing they will not get congressional approval for both?

Israel is better placed to become the new warhawk darling, given the country garners more sentiment from US and European conservatives who are increasingly wary of Ukraine.  The far-left support of Ukraine and their rabid anti-Russia propaganda has left many conservatives suspicious of the entire affair.  Leftists are revealing a similar zealotry in favor of Palestinian intifada, which might convince people on the right to support Israel by default.   

Right or wrong, it's easier to find Republicans that favor Israel simply on religious grounds than it is to find those that care about Ukraine, and this seems to be the key to the future of the establishment agenda – A conservative majority must be onboard for any new war endeavor to last.  Ukraine's failures have proven that.

There may be an overestimation, however, in terms of how many conservatives are open to funding yet another foreign quagmire.  Fears of Islamic extremism are justified, but not necessarily enough to compel Americans to ignore their own mounting problems at home.  Selling them on a plan to commit US funds and even military forces to Israel might be more difficult than the establishment thinks.

Tyler Durden Mon, 10/16/2023 - 02:45

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Equifax fined more than £11m by the FCA

This action follows incidents going back to 2017, when, according to the FCA, the company’s parent, Equifax Inc. (EFX), was subject to one of the largest…



This action follows incidents going back to 2017, when, according to the FCA, the company’s parent, Equifax Inc. (EFX), was subject to one of the largest cybersecurity breaches in history. The findings showed that hackers accessed the personal data of approximately 13.8 million people in the UK during this breach.

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Information such as names, dates of birth, phone numbers, login details, and partial credit card details were among the data accessed. The FCA maintains Equifax could have prevented this cyber attack if it treated its relationship with the US-based parent company as outsourcing.

Jessica Rusu Source: LinkedIn

Equifax did not discover the breach in UK consumer data safety until 6 weeks after Equifax Inc. became aware of the issue. The FCA said the company, which received notification only minutes before the parent company announced the incident, could not cope with the influx of queries and complaints. The regulator’s chief data, information and intelligence officer, Jessica Rusu, added:databreach

Cyber security and data protection are of growing importance to the security and stability of financial services. Firms not only have a technical responsibility to ensure resiliency, but also an ethical responsibility in the processing of consumer information. The Consumer Duty makes it clear that firms must raise their standards.

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