by Pam Martens and Russ Martens
Wall Street on Parade
At 10:00 a.m. this morning, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Jerome (Jay) Powell, will take his seat in the Rayburn House Office Building to deliver his semiannual testimony to the House Financial Services Committee and answer a multitude of questions on what the Fed has been up to lately. Powell will repeat the process again tomorrow before the Senate Banking Committee.
The public already knows the kinds of questions Democrats are going to lob at Powell tomorrow because Senators Sherrod Brown, Elizabeth Warren, Jack Reed and Tina Smith sent a letter to Powell on February 6, listing the specific questions they want answers to in preparation for the hearing on February 12. The questions are exclusively focused on the Fed’s unprecedented repo loans to Wall Street’s trading houses that began on September 17 of last year and have been made every single business day since that time. The cumulative tally of the loans is now more than $6.6 trillion, more than a third of the Fed loans made during the financial crisis. And yet, Powell insists there is no crisis on Wall Street. The Senators demanded answers to the following questions: