Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending August 5, 2017; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending August 10, 2017; Merck CEO Kenneth Frazier Quits Presidential Council, “Colorblindness” Must End


Of Note items

(1) Cannot find a job? Move! Billionaire Donald Trump (the 45th president who often travels to his properties) and economist Tyler Cowen (professor of economics at George Mason University) advise you to move, forgetting at-will employment, lack of relocation-cost reimbursement, effect of child custody agreements, underwater mortgages, or other real-life (not academic economist’s) considerations (for example, unemployed people do not have money).

(2) Detestable overt and implicit “colorblind” racial violence. It is commendable that Kenneth Frazier, CEO, Merck & Co., stated that he quit from Trump’s President’s Manufacturing Council as a result of Trump’s lack of response to the tragedy in Charlottesville, Va. (Image is from Frazier’s tweet (link above).)

merck ceo leaves council 2017

However, while the racial violence was overt in Charlottesville, the everyday implicit racial bias is equally corrosive to a fair society. The everyday silent, hidden “colorblind” violence continues. It would be far more helpful for Frazier to start a CEO-led committee to expose and eradicate all discrimination in the workplace.

The Supreme Court, through Antonin Scalia and John Marshall Harlan, demonstrated its institutional loyalty to the racial status quo–white-race societal dominance. The Federal Reserve, in its completed , almost 20-year employment discrimination case, Artis v. Greenspan Bernanke Yellen, also demonstrated its institutional fidelity to “colorblind” racial discrimination.

(See Auerbach, Robert (2008). “Deception and Abuse at the Fed,” chapter 8, and Merton, Rev. Thomas (1964). “Seeds of Destruction” (Letters to a White Liberal).)

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Sheila Clark’s letter to the EEOC (printed in the Auerbach book, page 123).

The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending August 5, 2017, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Forms Forms — initial Board review to extend with revision the Application for Employment with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FR 28, FR 28s, and FR 28i).
-Proposed, July 24, 2017Forms — initial Board review to extend without revision the Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Disclosure Requirements Associated with Proprietary Trading and Certain Interests in and Relationships with Covered Funds (Regulation VV) (FR VV).
-Proposed, July 27, 2017
Enforcement Barclays Bank PLC, New York Branch, New York, New York — issuance of a consent order of prohibition against Michael Weston, a former institution-affiliated party.
-Announced, July 24, 2017M&T Bank Corporation, Buffalo, New York, and Manufacturers and Traders Trust Company — written agreement dated June 17, 2013, terminated July 25, 2017.
-Announced, July 27, 2017

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for August 10, 2017, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of August 9, 2017):  $4,515,817 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

Federal Reserve Board: H.2 Release for Week Ending July 29, 2017; H.4.1 Release (Balance Sheet) for Week Ending August 3, 2017; Three Of Note Items


Of Note items

(1) On Friday August 4, 2017, it was declared that the United States had reached the same level of jobs as before the 2008 financial crash. There is no joy because many people still suffer from the financial aftermath of the Wall-Street-created crash.

(2) So much for “full employment”:  Baltimore Business Journal. “Thousands wait to apply for 1,200 new Amazon jobs in Baltimore”. Keep in mind that Amazon is a demanding employer (also, the fulfillment job people were lining up for is physically taxing), yet this was the response to a job fair. (Baltimore is within the jurisdiction of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.)

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(2(a.)) Update-7-August-2017: Kenneth Rapoza with Forbes provided details about these Amazon jobs people lined up for (and jobs which the Labor Department and the Federal Reserve counts as replacement jobs for the ones lost with the 2008 financial crash.

Rapoza’s article was titled “China-Like Wages Now Part of U.S. Employment Boom“:

Starting pay at the Amazon warehouse, carved out of a large lot with a new road called Innovation Way designed for Amazon-bound trucks, is at $12.75, no degree required. For inventory managers with warehousing experience, the pay is $14.70 an hour and requires a bachelor’s degree.

Hopefully, those hires do not have any student loans, or they will have to choose between rent, health insurance, a car, or Fannie Mae.

Some of the jobs are temporary hires through Integrity Staffing. The job description for one of the $12.75 an hour gigs includes the ability to stand for 10 to 12 hours straight in a fulfillment center where the temperature will occasionally exceed 90 degrees.

(3) An August 2, 2016 article in the Harvard Business Review asked “Why Americans Are So Angry Despite America’s Strong Economy?” A comment there said it all:

“Americans are so angry because they are tired of the endless propaganda, constantly telling the masses that things are different than observed, witnessed reality. They’re tired of cruddy, low wage jobs. They’re tired of being over-worked, just to see their rewards directed only towards the corporate bosses, the CEO’s. They’re tired of CEO’s making 400-1000 times their wages. They’re tired of the Transnational Capitalist Class (TCC), the .001% realizing most of the economic gains.”

Makes one think about the effect of the Board’s bloated balance sheet and who was helped by the extraordinary ($4.5 trillion) Board action.


The Federal Reserve Board (Board) publishes a weekly digest of its activities on its website. The digest is called the H.2 Release and is published every Thursday. The release for the week ending July 29, 2017, is below.

H.2 Release–Actions of the Board, Its Staff, and the Federal Reserve Banks; Applications and Reports Received

Category Action Taken
Forms Forms — initial Board review to extend with revision the Application for Employment with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (FR 28, FR 28s, and FR 28i).

-Proposed, July 24, 2017

 

Forms — initial Board review to extend without revision the Reporting, Recordkeeping, and Disclosure Requirements Associated with Proprietary Trading and Certain Interests in and Relationships with Covered Funds (Regulation VV) (FR VV).

-Proposed, July 27, 2017

Enforcement Barclays Bank PLC, New York Branch, New York, New York — issuance of a consent order of prohibition against Michael Weston, a former institution-affiliated party.

-Announced, July 24, 2017

 

M&T Bank Corporation, Buffalo, New York, and Manufacturers and Traders Trust Company — written agreement dated June 17, 2013, terminated July 25, 2017.

-Announced, July 27, 2017

Federal Reserve Board: Balance Sheet (H.4.1 Release)

The Board publishes data of factors affecting reserve balances. The digest is called the H.4.1 Release, and they are published every Thursday (or the next business day if the publication date falls on a federal holiday). The release for August 3, 2017, is below.

[Note: The blog will cover the line titled “Total Factors Supplying Reserve Funds.”]

H.4.1 Release–Factors Affecting Reserve Balances

Total factors supplying reserve funds (as of August 2, 2017):  $4,513,405 (in millions of dollars). (On September 26, 2007, this amount was $900,473 (in millions of dollars)).

(See the release for further information.)

“Health Insurance” Companies: Profit Motive is Contrary to the Interests of Medical Care and of the Insured’s Health; Single-Payer, Universal Health Care Is Needed in the United States

Health care cannot be for profit:  The profit-motive-oriented organization does not care about the health of its insureds but rather only its profit. It is the reason why single-payer, universal health care is the only rational solution.

There was a short blurb in the Washington Post stating that Aetna’s profit increased [note: see Aetna’s 8-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission] after leaving the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA, or ObamaCare) insurance exchanges. The increase in profit was due to the reduction of “health care costs.” Such a disgusting statement raises the question of Aetna’s existence to make money alone or to pay the insured’s health care costs.

Named Executive Officer for Aetna Inc. Title Net Worth Total Compensation
Mark T. Bertolini Chairman and CEO $180 million [Forbes (2016)] 2016- $18,662,306 [Aetna’s 2017 proxy statement, page 41]

Clearly, Aetna favors the money-making aspect (ensuring as many claims are not paid or at the smallest cost) while claiming to be a health-insurance company (payment of medical expenses on behalf of its insureds). The “health insurance” companies are simply extremely expensive middlemen, who do not even want to do their job–paying for health care. The ACA cannot fix this problem.

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