Don Bauder 4:30 p.m., Dec. 9
Is Federal Reserve "Banker to the World?"
Bloomberg News has come out with banking numbers today (Dec. 2) that raise disquieting questions about the U.S. Federal Reserve's role in the world. The central question: is the U.S. the banker to the world? Bloomberg quotes Federal Reserve data from the financial crisis showing that Swiss-based UBS and UK-based Barclays are among the top users of a $3.3 trillion Fed emergency banking program. UBS was the biggest borrower under the commercial paper funding facility, with $74.5 billion, more than twice as much as Citigroup, which is controlled by the U.S. Barclays took the largest amount of overnight loans when it got $47.9 billion on Sept. 18, 2008. Sen. Bernard Sanders, Vermont independent who wrote the provision into the Dodd-Frank Act requiring these Fed disclosures, asks, "Has the Federal Reserve become the central bank of the world?" Remember, the trillions of dollars the Fed has been printing to bail out the world's banks eventually comes out of the pockets of Americans.
Among American banks, Wells Fargo and Bank of America each got $45 billion from the term auction facility. And do you remember all those claims by Goldman Sachs that it didn't have to take federal money? They were b.s. Goldman borrowed more than $24 billion from a Fed program, according to Bloomberg.