Radio commentary, December 17, 2009

Happy Beethoven’s baptism day. Fed begins to withdraw some indulgence On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve held one of its regular policy-setting meetings, which happen every six weeks or so, and decided to do nothing, for now. That is, it left the interest rate under its direct control, the so-called federal funds rate, the interest rate that bank charge each other for overnight loans, unchanged at 0. Ok, it’s averaged 0.12% for the last few weeks, which is pretty close to 0. It also said in the statement accompanying the decision that it… Read More

Radio commentary, December 10, 2009

score one for the cows An interesting article in the New York Times earlier this week, reporting that Congress has done absolutely nothing to reform the credit-rating industry. You may recall that the credit rating industry helped give us the recent financial crisis, which, though ending, has left behind a toxic economic residue. The industry is paid by the issuers of securities to rate them. Investors then choose whether or not to buy these securities based on the ratings. You may wonder how objective these ratings are if they’re paid for by… Read More