The Federal Reserve, the country’s central bank, has pumped an additional $75 billion into the market. As they are doing this, they seem adamant that no one label this what it actually is: QE4.
The Federal Reserve is expected to resume its balance sheet expansion in response to demand for bank reserves. The central bank is reacting to a crunch last week in the overnight repo markets that sent short-term borrowing rates for bank’s surging, according to a report by CNBC. By doing this, the Fed is intentionally embarking on a different kind of program from the asset purchases used to pull the economy out of the financial crisis, but it’s still QE4.
Where the Fed under the quantitative easing of a decade ago was buying assets to pull the economy out of the Great Recession, this time it will be looking to meet the demand for cash as it tries to calibrate the proper level of reserves that banks need. Either way, the details vary, but the outcome is the same. Money is created out of thin air to help a flailing economy. Don’t expect your dollars to do anything other than lose what little value they have left.
The Fed is in the process now of conducting overnight repurchase, or repo, operations to make sure that funding for overnight loans stays constant and the funds rate trades within its targeted range of 1.75%-2%. In announcing the program, officials noted that the last time such a process happened was 11 years ago, amid the grim days of the crisis when liquidity dried up and caused a panic on Wall Street. –CNBC
The Fed initiating QE4 (but don’t call it that) has many people on edge. “Anytime you have anything juxtaposed to 2008, it tends to cause anxiety. What it did was suggest that the Fed doesn’t have a handle on this,” said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial. “They weren’t able to foresee this. That said, if they could come up with a facility for this, the issue will dissipate as a source of concern.”
The Money GPS titled their YouTube video accurately: Repo-calypse and the end of the Financial Markets As we Know It.