HOW MUCH MONEY CAN WE PRINT
November 21, 2020 - Douglas Myser
How much money can we print. The Federal Reserve is creating dollars from scratch at an unprecedented rate, one of the man made tools to rescue the economy amid the coronavirus pandemic. In its frantic scramble to save the American economy, the central bank of the United States seems to have the ultimate superpower. It works magic. With a few strokes on a computer, the Federal Reserve prints money and then makes an electronic deposit. By the end of the year, the Fed is projected to have purchased $3.5 trillion in government securities with these newly created dollars, one of many tools it is using to help prop up the ailing economy during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Oxford economics. "The way you ad I have checking accounts in our banks, that's how all these other banks have accounts at the Fed," said Pavlins Tcherneva, an economist at Bard College in New York. "All the Fed does in literally credit them. Them just type it in." How much money can we print.
The Fed's goal: to keep markets functioning after they had seized up in fear. The strategy also makes credit easier to obtain, with a bigger money supply and lower interest rates. Without these and the Fed's other emergency measures, the economy would have crashed already, experts say. Fed Chari Jerome Powell said at a recent news conference that these purchases have helped market conditions improve "substantially" in recent weeks. How much money can we print.
The very idea of it tends to explode the heads of those who say dollars should come from work, savings and investment instead of thin air. In an age of a nearly $25 trillion national debt, such "sound money" concepts seem outdated--relics of a bygone ear in which the value of a dollar once was based on a fixed amount of gold. In this case, the federal government's bank isn't just creating massive amounts of dollars from scratch. The government also is, in effect, using those newly created dollars to pay down its own debt.
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