It appears a long silence will finally be broken…
By Micah Hanks
In Hollywood, having an enigmatic “mystique” about you is considered a desirable thing. After all, nearly anyone would prefer to carry an awe-inspiring air about them, leaving questions and speculation to inquiring minds obsessed with the intrigue surrounding one’s mysterious persona.
The Federal Reserve, on the other hand, is often criticized for maintaining such a mystique. While some economists will argue that a healthy amount of regulatory secrecy is the best protection for a volatile economy, many concerns have risen, particularly in the last few years, over just how much secrecy an entity like the Fed should be able to have. Speculation of this sort has resulted in bipartisan measures brought before Congress, which have attempted to legislate a full audit of the Fed’s monetary activity. Though some success has been achieved in exacting audit provisions, no attempts thus far have managed to secure full accountability for the Fed’s transactions, with support from the Executive Branch helping forestall measures introduced before both the House and Senate prior to passage.
However, Wednesday April 27 will mark another milestone in Fed transparency, with a press conference scheduled for 2:15 PM EDT today. “This is a high stakes gamble for chairman Bernanke,” Michael Robinson told the Huffington Post recently. Robinson is the former spokesman for the Securities and Exchange Commission, now serving as senior vice president of Levick Strategic Communications, and noted the “allure or mystique” the Fed has been able to maintain for so long. Certainly, by speaking publicly on such matters, Bernanke runs the risk of laying bare many of the Federal Reserve’s activities… and imposing a greater degree of accountability as well.
It’s no secret that the Federal Reserve has incurred the wrath of many, running the gamut from politicians and economists to conspiracy theorists who have long argued that the organization’s activities may not always work in the best interest for the U.S. and global economies. In an effort to provide general information about the Fed and how it works, Chairman Bernanke makes an appearance in this video, where he explains the Federal Reserve and its role in monetary policy. However, a much finer representation exists courtesy of the video below, where two “Xtranormal Creatures” can be seen discussing the Fed and quantitative easing:
Bernanke’s press conference will air today at 2:15 PM EDT, and may be viewed by visiting FederalReserve.gov and clicking the video on the right hand side of the homepage.
Image by Medill via Flickr.