For The First Time Ever The Fed Must Reveal Which Big Banks Took Emergency Loans From The Discount Window


Photo: Cushing Memorial Library and Archives, Texas A&M via Flickr

The Fed ruled today that it must reveal which banks got federal funds from the discount window.The discount window allowed banks to borrow money from the Central Bank on an emergency basis to meet liquidity shortages during the crisis.

Who did and who didn’t access the funds and when should be very interesting.

Remember when the Fed released all of those TARP details and everyone said, “but they didn’t reveal anything interesting!”

Well, this is the interesting stuff – it’s who took emergency loans during the crisis.

Bloomberg sued the Fed demanding that they reveal the data. The Clearing House (a group of the nation’s largest commercial banks) had invoked a FOIA exemption that covers “trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from a person and privileged or confidential,” according to Bloomberg.


But now, the the Fed has will have to release the information within five days.

The information that will be released, according to Bloomberg:

  • 231 pages of documents related to borrowers in April and May 2008, along with loan amounts. 

Why don’t the banks don’t want it released?

The group of banks wrote in its attempt to block the ruling that “Disclosure of this information threatens to harm the borrowing banks by allowing the public to observe their borrowing patterns during the recent financial crisis and draw inferences — whether justified or not — about their current financial conditions.”

Late Mark Pittman, a Bloomberg reporter, originally FOIA’d the information.

Via Bloomberg reporter Lizzie O’Leary

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