Federal Reserve Policy-Making: A Study in Government Economic Policy Formation

Federal Reserve Policy-Making: A Study in Government Economic Policy Formation

Federal Reserve Policy-Making: A Study in Government Economic Policy Formation

Federal Reserve Policy-Making: A Study in Government Economic Policy Formation

Excerpt

This little book is a study in modern economic policy- making. It has two main purposes. The first is to report in some detail a recent extensive study of the process of Federal Reserve monetary and bank-supervisory policy formation. The second is to look analytically at the policy-making experience of the past quarter century to see what lessons it may have for the future.

No one who has participated in the economic policy- making of modern government needs to be warned against the fallacy of a neat dichotomy between "policy formation" and operating government. Congress seldom passes statutes on economic questions which clearly define policy and require no de facto administrative policy-making. "Economic policy" is not something neatly separated from political, social, and other kinds of policy. And the positions held by other officials, agencies, and pressure groups often unfortunately preclude even serious attention to careful analyses made by professional economists in the agencies formally responsible for policy-making. Nor is it so clear as it may appear superficially that in a democratic society where the various branches of government manage, however imperfectly, to mirror many of the pressures of manifold public demands, economic policy ought somehow to be set apart from and protected from these other forces.

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