Senator Wyden Calls Mnuchin’s Grab of CARES Act Money “Sabotage.” Wyden Has a Right to be Suspicious of Mnuchin

by Pam Martens and Russ Martens
Wall Street on Parade

On November 25, Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon Tweeted this: “The Trump administration is working harder to sabotage the economy and tie the Biden administration’s hands than it is to help working families survive a pandemic.” Wyden’s Tweet included a clip from a Bloomberg News article about how U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin was planning to move $455 billion of CARES Act money to the General Fund of the Treasury so that the next Treasury Secretary in the Biden administration wouldn’t be able to use it to help bolster the economy.

That same Bloomberg News article included this sentence: “The money in question includes $429 billion that Mnuchin is clawing back from the Fed — which backed some of the central bank’s emergency lending facilities…” But as we detailed last Friday, 75 percent of the $454 billion that the CARES Act earmarked for emergency lending programs at the Fed to help struggling Americans and businesses survive the pandemic and support bank lending was never handed over to those programs by Mnuchin. All that the Fed has been reporting on its weekly financial statements for months is $114 billion from the Treasury for these programs. The breakdown of that $114 billion is as follows, according to the Fed’s weekly H.4.1 financial statements: (See Footnote 14 to Table 1.) We contacted the Fed via email and it stands by this breakdown:

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