STEARNS JOINS IN HOUSE APPROVAL OF LEGISLATION TO AUDIT THE FEDERAL RESERVE
STEARNS COSPONSORED H.R. 459, THE FEDERAL RESERVE TRANSPARENCY ACT
JULY 25, 2012 – “In the aftermath of the financial crisis, the balance sheet of the Federal Reserve went to $3 trillion in June of 2012, up from $900 billion at the beginning of the crisis in 2008,” said Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL). “The Fed expanded its balance sheet by influencing the money supply through quantitative easing and setting up dollar swap lines with the European Central Bank. Creating this ‘money’ has to have an economic impact on the United States, and we need greater transparency into the operations of the Federal Reserve.”
The House today approved H.R. 459, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act. The measure directs the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct an audit of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and the Federal Reserve banks within 12 months of the date of enactment, with a report to be delivered to Congress within 90 days of completion of the audit. The audit must include a detailed description of the findings of the audit with GAO’s recommendations for legislative and administrative action.
Created in 1913, the Federal Reserve regulates the supply and value of money. The Federal Reserve acts independently of the Executive Branch and Congress had imposed restrictions on accessing information about the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy. Added Stearns, “The American people should have insight into how the Federal Reserve exercises its authority, and Congress should demand greater accountability and transparency.”