Dallas Fed's Fisher Gets All Teary-Eyed for the Fed
Dallas Fedhead Richard Fisher to the Annual Meeting of the Waco Business League; I would have covered this earlier but the only relevant bit ("the Texas economy is firming up") was covered all over the place by those other media folks and JDA's been a busy busy girl these days.
Anyway. Risks to Sustained Economic Recovery (With Lessons Learned from Winston Churchill and Teddy Roosevelt). The motherfucker really knows how to put on a show, doesn't he?
These are times that try men’s and women’s souls: They are not particularly felicitous economic times. The Federal Reserve has worked tirelessly for the past two years to rescue the financial system and the economy from plunging into the abyss of depression and chaos. As last year came to a close, we saw our efforts begin to bear some fruit: Interest rates and spreads between the yields on various key financial instruments have come down significantly. The markets for bonds and stocks have come back to life, and the economy—while subject to taking one step back for every few it takes forward—has nonetheless begun a palpable, if tepid, recovery.
I do not know where, exactly, Fisher's "palp" is but I don't feel anything. All I see is a cracked out administration, some NY Fed/AIG bullshit, worse unemployment, and his Fed still without an exit strategy. But what do I know?
Now wait, this bit is kind of rad and I'm excited to see a regional Bank President taking a step to identify himself. As we learned this weekend in the case of both Zero Hedge and Market Ticker misinterpreting statements by Richmond Fed President Lacker, it's important to separate the Board from the bitch ass Banks from the good banks. Is there such a thing? What the fuck, do you think we can dismantle the Fed from out here?
Fisher is separating himself - and his Bank - from the toxic mess in Washington. Distancing himself from the bullshit at the NY Fed and whatever sins Tim Geithner has to atone for. Dallas didn't sign off on that, that's just not what they do.
Before getting into these weighty matters, let me demystify the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
This is a Federal Reserve note, otherwise known as a dollar bill. If you look closely at the face of the one dollar note, you will see that in the middle of the left side is the letter “K,” surrounded by two concentric circles. The outer circle says “Federal Reserve” and “Texas,” and the inner circle says “Bank of” and “Dallas.” “K” is the 11th letter in the alphabet—in all four corners of the bill are printed the number “11.” The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas is responsible for the administration of the Federal Reserve’s affairs in the 11th of 12 Federal Reserve Districts that were set up by Congress under the Federal Reserve Act of 1913. Every one dollar bill bears the imprint of one of the Federal Reserve Banks, starting with the “A” of the Boston Fed and ending with the “L” of the San Francisco Fed. Presently, there is nearly $1 trillion worth of Federal Reserve notes in circulation (Of course, you know that Dallas Fed dollars are of greater nominal value than the others!). [yeah right, JDA knows where the "real money" is.]
The economic activity conducted within some 350,000 square miles north, south, east and west of Waco by the roughly 26 million people in the Eleventh District—stretching from southern New Mexico, through all of Texas and across the wooded north of Louisiana—is serviced by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and its three branches.
I am the president and CEO of a $70 billion bank. That bank operates at a profit—a profit that we send to the Treasury. Indeed, as we just announced this morning, the 12 Federal Reserve Banks, collectively, expect to transfer $46 billion to the Treasury for 2009. You are looking at an individual affiliated with one of the few public agencies that actually pay down the federal deficit.
What do we do for those 26 million people in the Eleventh District? For starters, we make sure they have the cash they need. Last year, the Dallas Fed distributed and received almost 6 billion circulating banknotes, worth nearly $103 billion at face value. Our mammoth machines scan the cash at an average rate around 100,000 bills per hour and process them so they can be shipped from our vaults to banks throughout our district, providing you and the other citizens in our district with folding money. Of course, in addition to making sure there is a sufficient amount in circulation, we have to make sure your folding money is valid and looks respectable: Each month, we cull hundreds of counterfeit bills, and we pluck out over 38 million worn bills that have lived a full life and are ready to be shredded, sent off to Money Heaven and replaced by new, crisp notes.
We also process checks. In 2009, the Dallas Fed processed 120 million paper checks. The use of paper checks has been, and will continue to be, on a substantial decline as consumers and businesses take up electronic counterparts. Due to advances in technology, most banks now send us checks in a digital format. We received and processed an average of 70 million electronic images each month last year.
They do some other shit at the Dallas Fed that you might find interesting but as with the rest of the regionals, it's pretty much all out there if you care to look. Don't bitch that they kept it a secret until you go to track it down. Then if you still don't find it, commence to bitching (fuck you, NY Fed).
Blah blah blah, here's the point: there's the bullshit in New York and the bullshit at the Board and then there are these sad bastards like the ones in Dallas just trying to stay the fuck away from that mess.
+1 Fisher. I'll take it.