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Inflation has been of greater concern to the Fed and was addressed in two of the four paragraphs in its statement last Wednesday, a document whose language and content is closely scrutinized by analysts for subtle hints on future monetary policy.
Because Greenspan rarely gave interviews to journalists for direct quotation, Hartcher's book contains no interview with the Fed chairman.
The third and most vexing issue facing central banks today is the proper evaluation of asset prices, which have bedeviled monetary policymakers since the start of the Fed.
All in all, The Fed is the best face that can be put on a depressing situation while still stating the facts.
Students, teachers and parents interested in information on next year's Fed Challenge competition and the Citibank Scholarships, Awards and Grants for The Fed Challenge should call toll-free: 1-877-FED-CHLG.
A few years later, the chairman of the Fed would serve on the board of Resolution Trust Corp.
But the Fed also has made sure the financial system has plenty of currency reserves to meet unexpected demand for cash from depositors worried that bank computer glitches would prevent access to their money.
Indeed, many current criticisms of the Fed are driven less by a lust for inflation than by a disagreement about what is really happening in the economy.