Ken Leighton 9:29 a.m., May 22
Fed to Release Information on Wall Street Loans during Crisis
The Supreme Court today (March 21) refused to intervene in a long-running Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) suit filed by Bloomberg News in 2008. Thus, the Federal Reserve will have to release information on emergency loans it made to Wall Street banks and others during the height of the financial crisis of 2008. Bloomberg's initial FOIA request was thumbed down by the Fed. Bloomberg sued. A New York federal appeals court ruled that the public, through the media, should have access to the Fed's loan data. A group of banks appealed to the Supreme Court, which today refused to intervene. The Fed said it would make the information available. According to CNN/Money, the Fed in December reported it had made $9 trillion in overnight loans to major banks and Wall Street firms during the financial crisis.
Bloomberg correctly argues that the world's financial system almost fell apart because of deals that had been made in secret. Now Bloomberg hopes there will be transparency from the Fed, although I am afraid the central bank will look for every loophole it can find to keep its actions secret.