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The Myth of Independence: How Congress Governs the Federal Reserve
Born out of crisis a century ago, the Federal Reserve has become the most powerful macroeconomic policymaker and financial regulator in the world. The Myth of Independence traces the Fed's transformation from a weak, secretive, and decentralized institution in 1913 to a remarkably transparent central bank a century later. Offering a unique account of Congress's role in ste ...more
Hardcover, 296 pages
Published September 5th 2017 by Princeton University Press
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Start your review of The Myth of Independence: How Congress Governs the Federal Reserve
This is a well done overview of the Federal Reserve's relationship to Congress over the Fed's 100 year history. The authors show that Congressional politics helped determine the layout of Federal Reserve districts and the placement of Federal Reserve Banks, which were especially overrepresented in the South, and that the location of those banks later created local political supporters who defended the Federal Reserve in Congress (again and again). Although the Federal Reserve often kowtowed to t ...more
This book is a sort of history of the Fed with a focus on the political forces that have driven its evolution. Relative to other histories of the Fed, this one has more quantitative analysis of the drivers of Fed-related legislative outcomes, with varying degrees of persuasiveness (pretty small samples and a lot of discretion in operationalizing variables). But the broader point of the book is in the title: the authors argue that the notion of a independent Fed is a "myth" because Congress and t ...more
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