Andrew Huszar managed the Federal Reserve's $1.25 trillion mortgage-backed security purchase program.
This appeared on the Wall Street Journal's op-ed page.
I can only say: I'm sorry, America. As a former Federal Reserve official, I was responsible for executing the centerpiece program of the Fed's first plunge into the bond-buying experiment known as quantitative easing. The central bank continues to spin QE as a tool for helping Main Street. But I've come to recognize the program for what it really is: the greatest backdoor Wall Street bailout of all time.The sense of the article, imo, is here:
Trading for the first round of QE ended on March 31, 2010. The final results confirmed that, while there had been only trivial relief for Main Street, the U.S. central bank's bond purchases had been an absolute coup for Wall Street. The banks hadn't just benefited from the lower cost of making loans. They'd also enjoyed huge capital gains on the rising values of their securities holdings and fat commissions from brokering most of the Fed's QE transactions. Wall Street had experienced its most profitable year ever in 2009, and 2010 was starting off in much the same way....If it was apparent at the end of 2010 that all that was happening was happy and richer-than-ever bankers and a credit-strangled Real Economy, one has to wonder how it came to be that neither the FED Board, its Chairman, nor the Democratic Leadership has thought to mention that repeating what doesn't work usually doesn't work.
...As for the rest of America, good luck. Because QE was relentlessly pumping money into the financial markets during the past five years, it killed the urgency for Washington to confront a real crisis: that of a structurally unsound U.S. economy.
[emphasis in the original]
Most likely, it's because it IS working. After all, the Democratic Leadership has yet to repudiate, loudly and daily, the Top-Down Trickle Upon Delusion at the core of Republican Economics. (Nor, we should mention, Deregulation, Privatization, and Free Trade. ALL of which has brought Main Street to its knees.)
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Sometimes there's so many dots, they make a picture without even having to connect them. Another such 'dot' was today's comments by (President-elect-of-my-heart) Elizabeth Warren.
While praising recent signs from Treasury Secretary Jack Lew that he's aware there's something maybe wrong, she does indicate that if the rest of the Administration's agents don't do something...well, as she put it:
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) warned in a speech Tuesday that the problem of banks considered "too big to fail" has only gotten worse since the 2008 financial crisis, potentially sowing the seeds of a future crisis.
"Today, the four biggest banks are 30 percent larger than they were five years ago. And the five largest banks now hold more than half of the total banking assets in the country," Warren said in a keynote address at a conference on the future of financial reform put on by the Roosevelt Institute, a think tank. "Who would have thought five years ago, after we witnessed firsthand the dangers of an overly concentrated financial system, that the 'too big to fail' problem would only have gotten worse?"
Treasury Secretary Jack Lew recently said that if 'too big to fail' is still a problem at the end of the year, it might be time to consider other options. I applaud Secretary Lew for laying out a timeline, and I’d like to see other administration officials and regulators follow suit," she said. "If Dodd-Frank gives the regulators the tools to end 'too big to fail,' great -- end 'too big to fail.' But if the regulators won’t end 'too big to fail,' then Congress must act to protect our economy and prevent future crises."If anyone is wondering what the other dots consist of: for me personally one of them is how all my friends laugh when the 'Recovery' is mentioned. For others the decline in real income vs. real inflation during the last five, eight, ten, twenty years (pick any time frame you want); the continual loss of higher-paying jobs to overseas being replaced by largely work as menials here; income inequality; transfer of wealth upward all the time, and the very very ...
peculiar fact that when majorities, two-thirds, three-quarters, and more of the voters say for years now JOBS IS OUR NUMBER ONE CONCERN, no political party has made HERE'S OUR MASSIVE JOBS PLAN something to win elections on.
Of course, these tie back to the Top-Down Trickle Upon theory. Which is apparently something Very Serious People believe in heart and soul. So we get more practice of Austerity than we get of JOBS; we get more talk of budget and deficit than we get of JOBS; we get more deregulation, privatization, and Free Trade Agreements than we get JOBS.
'If the Banks just can recover from the fact that they're insolvent long enough (obviously the point of the FEDs policies), then eventually, when US citizens are broken down enough they'll be willing to compete wage-wise with slave-, child-, and dollar-a-day-labor, the jobs will come home.'
What else could our political and economic elites be thinking?