Monetary Policy

Banking without Banks

In recent months Dr. Tiemann has focused his research into economic and banking history on the California Gold Rush. He plans to produce a series of articles from that work. In this article, though, Dr. Tiemann examines the fascinating period just before the Gold Rush, when California’s economy suffered a severe shortage of cash and an absence of banks. Read about William A. Leidesdorff, a San Francisco merchant in the 1840s, who dealt with those handicaps by becoming, in effect, his own banker.

Government Credit and Money

Dr. Tiemann takes a deep look at the historical antecedents, including Ely’s Rebellion and the writings of Joseph Hawley, to show why our monetary system relies on the soundness of Government credit. Dr. Tiemann maintains that keeping the public credit in good standing is of paramount importance.

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The Purpose of Monetary Policy

The Federal Open Market Committee is scheduled to have one of its regularly-scheduled meetings with Fed Chair Janet Yellen making an announcement on interest rate policy.  Most observers expect the Fed to leave short-term interest rates unchanged for now, but the FOMC’s likely actions in the near future could be to raise rates.  Dr. Tiemann reviews the […]

Competition

In his note on market competition Dr. Tiemann writes: “It’s an attempt to dig a little deeper than the stylized models we study in economics courses, and think a bit about how competition operates in the real economy.”

It Isn’t a Forecast

The Federal Reserve has a dual mandate to both maintain price stability and reasonably full employment at the same time. This differs from that of its counterparts in other countries, which focus primarily on fighting inflation. Because of this, the Fed's monetary action are often overtly counter-cyclical, raising or lowering interest rates or tightening or loosening money […]

The Launch of the QE 2

In Nov. 2010, the Fed launched a second round of quantitative easing, dubbed the “QE2”. The action raised many questions and this note explores the possible impacts of this action on the economy. It continues the discussion started in the prior note-addressing the Government’s fiscal policies-and focuses this time on the Government’s monetary policy.

The Borrower of Last Resort

Discusses why governments need private savings to maintain stimulative fiscal policies and why channeling those savings into investments is best. Review of the Keynes paradox of thrift, the need to reduce deficits but also how that can also be a recipe for disaster. Describes how the Feds can avoid igniting inflation and why government spending and borrowing […]

Meet Ben Bernanke, the New Fed Chair

A summary of the Federal Reserve's shift in policy and transparency during the tenures of Paul Volker and Alan Greenspan. Discusses the changes in the Fed's approach to monetary policy from managing money supply to managing short term interest rates. The new Fed Chair, Ben Bernanke, supports a Fed policy targeting inflation rather than interest rates or […]