Mnuchin backs Fed independence and signals reform isn’t priority

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Tweet on Twitter / By Craig Torres and Saleha Mohsin via Bloomberg News / January 24, 2017

U.S. Treasury Secretary nominee Steven Mnuchin isn’t jumping on the Republican bandwagon to audit the Fed.

In written questions by senators following his confirmation hearing last Thursday, Mnuchin was asked about his thoughts on “politicizing decisions made by the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and the benefits of an independent central bank.”

Mnuchin’s answer was crafted carefully.

“The Federal Reserve is organized with sufficient independence to conduct monetary policy and open market operations,” Mnuchin responded to Senator Bill Nelson, a Florida Democrat. “I endorse the increased transparency we have seen from the Federal Reserve Board over recent years.”

The response appears to lean against legislation such as the Fed Oversight Reform and Modernization Act of 2015, or FORM Act, which was introduced in the House of Representatives but never became law, which would have subjected the central bank’s monetary policy decisions to greater congressional scrutiny. …

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