Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke during his Capitol Hill testimony Wednesday before the Joint Economic Committee.
Alex Wong/Getty Images
May 22, 2013 The Fed chairman cautioned Wednesday that if interest rates were to start rising now, the economy could slump. Meanwhile, the National Association of Realtors said sales of existing homes rose — and would have been even stronger if not for tight inventory.
The Federal Reserve's headquarters in Washington, D.C. What goes on inside there is of intense interest to investors.
Karen Bleier /AFP/Getty Images
April 11, 2013 The central bank made a mistake. It sent minutes from its most recent policy meeting to a small group of influential institutions, including some major banks, a day earlier than scheduled. But the minutes are always weeks old. Why are they important? Because they contain clues to the Fed's thinking.
March 6, 2013 As the year began there was at least some growth in most parts of the country, the central bank says.
What, me worry?
January 30, 2013 A snake-eating-its-tail thing happens when you think certain thoughts about money and the Federal Reserve.
Warm around the ears.
Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
December 12, 2012 The leaders of the Federal Reserve just did something that sounds boring but is actually a big deal: They promised to keep interest rates super low until the unemployment rate comes way down.
The Federal Reserve's headquarters in Washington, D.C.
Karen Bleier /AFP/Getty Images
December 12, 2012 The central bank's policymakers also said they expect their policies aimed at stimulating growth will remain in effect until the jobless rate drops to 6.5 percent, from the current 7.7 percent.
Shoppers at a Target store in Westbury, N.Y., last week. Consumer spending drives the economy. And the holiday shopping season is crucial for retailers.
Shannon Stapleton /Reuters /Landov
November 28, 2012 The central bank says conditions continued to improve, though not dramatically, in recent weeks. The report adds to other evidence that the economy is moving along fast enough to keep unemployment from rising, but not fast enough to bring the jobless rate down sharply.
October 25, 2012 Germany's central bank needs to prove that its massive gold reserve actually exists. This is not quite as random as it sounds.
October 16, 2012 The government is printing 7.8 billion pieces of paper money, valued at $472.9 billion. Here's how that breaks down by denomination. Also: a special bonus graphic showing the lifespan of money.
September 25, 2012 Ben Bernanke needs to convince consumers that they can trust the economy again, that now really is the time to jump back into the stock market or buy that bigger house.
Jim Watson/Getty Images
September 13, 2012 What people think is going to happen to the economy has a huge influence over what actually happens. The Fed knows this, and is trying to take advantage of it.
Give us a sign.
September 13, 2012 The Fed has the power to create money. But it has another, critical power: The power of words.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/161037929/161050120" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke talks to educators Aug. 7 in Washington, D.C. At their most recent meeting, many Fed members backed action to boost the economy.
Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP
August 22, 2012 Many Federal Reserve members said there would have to be action fairly soon if the economy didn't pick up, according to the minutes of their most recent meeting. Separately, the CBO warned of a recession if the economy goes off a "fiscal cliff" at the end of year.
August 1, 2012 While acknowledging that the economy has slowed further, the central bank still expects growth to continue.
August 1, 2012 Unemployment falls a little, then it stalls. It goes down a little more, then it stalls again. The Fed could announce new measures to bring down unemployment as soon as today.
NPR thanks our sponsors
Become an NPR sponsor