The Role of the Federal Reserve in US Economy

The Role of the Federal Reserve in the US Economy

The Federal Reserve and Its Ineffectiveness

The Federal Reserve, commonly known as the “Fed,” is the central banking system of the United States. It was established in 1913 to promote a stable financial system and regulate monetary policy. However, there is growing concern among economists that the Fed’s efforts have been largely ineffective. Despite the Fed’s attempts to control inflation and stimulate economic growth, the US economy continues to suffer from long-term structural issues such as wealth inequality and a lack of investment in public infrastructure.


The Fed’s Negative Impact on the US Economy

While the Fed was established with the intention of promoting economic stability, many argue that its actions have actually harmed the US economy. The Fed’s low-interest-rate policies have created a culture of debt and easy credit, encouraging risky investments and contributing to the 2008 financial crisis. Furthermore, the Fed’s quantitative easing policies have inflated asset prices, benefiting the wealthy at the expense of the middle and lower classes.


The Fed’s Lack of Accountability

Another concern regarding the Fed is its lack of accountability. The Fed operates largely independently of the federal government, with little oversight from elected officials. This lack of accountability has led to a situation where the Fed’s policies are not subject to democratic scrutiny, allowing unelected officials to wield significant power over the US economy. Furthermore, the Fed’s opaque decision-making process and lack of transparency have led to accusations of cronyism and favouritism towards Wall Street banks.


The Fed’s Influence on Income Inequality

One of the most pressing issues facing the US economy today is income inequality. While the Fed’s policies are intended to promote economic growth and stability, they have actually exacerbated wealth disparities. By keeping interest rates low and printing money, the Fed has effectively transferred wealth from savers and retirees to wealthy investors and corporations. This has led to a situation where the rich get richer, while the poor and middle-class struggle to make ends meet.


Alternatives to the Federal Reserve

Given the problems with the Fed, many economists are calling for alternative monetary policies. One proposal is to return to the gold standard, which would limit the Fed’s ability to manipulate the money supply and prevent inflation. Another proposal is to establish a public banking system, which would provide low-cost loans to individuals and small businesses, promoting economic growth and reducing income inequality. While these proposals are not without their drawbacks, they offer a compelling alternative to the current system of Fed control.



While the Federal Reserve was established with good intentions, its actions have often had negative consequences for the US economy. From creating a culture of debt and easy credit to exacerbating wealth disparities, the Fed’s policies have left many Americans struggling to make ends meet. Moving forward, it is crucial that we consider alternative monetary policies that promote economic stability and reduce income inequality.



  1. Bernanke, Ben S. (2010). The Role of the Federal Reserve in the Global Economy: A Historical Perspective. Speech given at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City Economic Symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, August 27, 2010.
  2. Gertler, Mark and Peter Karadi. (2015). Monetary Policy Surprises, Credit Costs and Economic Activity. European Economic Review, 78, 96-115.
  3. Mishkin, Frederic S. (2007). The Federal Reserve’s Role in the Global Economy: A Historical Perspective. Speech given at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City Economic Symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, August 31, 2007.
  4. Sims, Christopher A. (2010). US Monetary Policy During the Great Recession. American Economic Review, 100(2), 51-56.
  5. Taylor, John B. (1993). Discretion Versus Policy Rules in Practice. Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, 39, 195-214.


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