Today, the House of Representatives will vote on the Federal Reserve Transparency Act (H.R. 459). The bill was introduced to address the Federal Reserve's 2008 and 2009 bailouts, which authorized a total of $1 trillion in outstanding loans and the expansion of government involvement in the private sector, primarily to AIG and Bear Stearns. Although the Federal Reserve has released information about the amounts borrowed by banks and companies that utilized emergency programs, Congress has not been made aware of the factors and considerations weighed by the Federal Reserve in determining how and to which institutions to lend the money. H.R.459 does not seek to curb the Federal Reserve's independence, but aims to allow Congress to perform its appropriate oversight duty, ensuring that credible standards guide the Federal Reserve's decision making. Given the significant sums of money involved, we need more transparency into where and why the money was dispersed.
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