Humphrey Hawkins

July 8th, 2014 2:47 pm | by John Jansen |

Old timers refer to it as Humphrey Hawkins testimony; those of more recent vintage refer to it as the “Semi Annual Monetary Policy Report to Congress”. So mark your calendar as Ms Yellen will testify July 15 at 1000AM.

As an historical footnote the Humphrey Hawkins bill is actually known as the Full Employment and Balanced Growth Act. It is a 1970s version of the Employment Act of 1946. The updated version is the legal authority for the Fed’s hydra headed dual mandate in which it mandated to promote employment and growth as well as a stable inflation rate.

Here is the Wikipedia summary of the bill:

  • Explicitly states that the federal government will rely primarily on private enterprise to achieve the four goals.
  • Instructs the government to take reasonable means to balance the budget.
  • Instructs the government to establish a balance of trade, i.e., to avoid trade surpluses or deficits.
  • Mandates the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve to establish a monetary policy that maintains long-run growth, minimizes inflation, and promotes price stability.
  • Instructs the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve to transmit an Monetary Policy Report to the Congress twice a year outlining its monetary policy.
  • Requires the President to set numerical goals for the economy of the next fiscal year in the Economic Report of the President and to suggest policies that will achieve these goals.
  • Requires the Chairman of the Federal Reserve to connect the monetary policy with the Presidential economic policy.


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  1. 2 Responses to “Humphrey Hawkins”

  2. By Nemo on Jul 8, 2014 | Reply

    These days I call it Sadie Hawkins testimony

    P.S. Welcome back. Was a little worried about you.

  3. By John Jansen on Jul 9, 2014 | Reply

    Very sexist! Regarding my return I am trying to strike some sort of balance between blogging and retirement. Not easy chore.

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