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Frequently Asked Questions about the Financial Crisis

How has the financial crisis affected the Fed’s monetary policy?

The financial crisis has interfered with the Fed's ability to operate a conventional monetary policy. Lender-of-last-resort measures have been a primary focus. The FOMC has reduced its target for t...
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With the federal funds rate near zero, is monetary policy still relevant?

Monetary policy remains potent. Even with the fed funds rate at zero, the Fed can continue to influence financial markets and the economy through open market operations and various lending programs...
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Recent News

February 23, 2009 | Federal Reserve Press Release

The U.S. Treasury Department, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Office of Thrift Supervision, and the Federal Reserve Board issue a joint statement that the U.S. government stands firmly behind the banking system, and that the government will ensure that banks have the capital and liquidity they need to provide the credit necessary to restore economic growth. Further, the agencies reiterate their determination to preserve the stability of systemically important financial institutions.

February 18, 2009 | Executive Summary

President Obama announces The Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan.   The plan includes a program to permit the refinancing of conforming home mortgages owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac that currently exceed 80 percent of the value of the underlying home. The plan also creates a $75 billion Homeowner Stability Initiative to modify the terms of eligible home loans to reduce monthly loan payments.  In addition, the U.S. Treasury Department will increase its preferred stock purchase agreements with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to $200 billion, and increase the limits on the size of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's portfolios to $900 billion.

President Obama signs into law the "American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009", which includes a variety of spending measures and tax cuts intended to promote economic recovery.

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