Reply to post: US money printing has been in reversal for a couple years now

Higher US Fed interest rates will hit startups over the head

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

US money printing has been in reversal for a couple years now

The US did three cycles of QE, but after the conclusion of QE2 the Fed adopted a policy of allowing the bonds they held to mature without replacement, and continued this even during QE3. So over time as the bonds they hold mature they are effectively undoing that money printing - but at a slower pace than it was "printed" so it will take 7-8 more years for the Fed's holdings to reach pre-2008 levels.

They also purchased mortgage backed securities as part of QE3, which Fannie and Freddie would have otherwise ended up holding, so while this technically counts as monetary expansion had they not purchased them Fannie or Freddie would have ended up holding them so they're just in a different place on the government's books. Likewise these holdings decrease over time as the WAL decreases via principal paydown or payoffs resulting from sale/refinancing. But that's really just transferring them off the Fed's books as the ones that are paid off via sale or refinancing will mostly end up on Fannie/Freddie's books[*]

[*] Fannie/Freddie are making a lot of money for the US government these days, and are primarily responsible for the fact that TARP turned out to be profitable for the US government - over $65 billion in profit so far and continuing to increase - which is probably why even republicans who are loathe to have the US government involved in the private mortgage market have done little to re-privatize them since it would make our deficit bigger!

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