How J.P. Morgan and company helped create the Federal Reserve system : Planet Money The story of the back-room dealings that created America's central bank. | Subscribe to our weekly newsletter here.

A locked door, a secret meeting and the birth of the Fed (Classic)

A locked door, a secret meeting and the birth of the Fed (Classic)

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J.P. Morgan Flickr/The Library of Congress hide caption

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Flickr/The Library of Congress

J.P. Morgan

Flickr/The Library of Congress

On today's show, we tell the origin story of the Federal Reserve — the most powerful financial institution on the planet.

The story includes a 70-year-old man with a bad head cold and a bunch of mistresses, a nation that's deeply ambivalent about a central bank, and a secret meeting on an island with a sketchy name.

Music: "Oxygenate the Idea" and "Say We Go Circular" and "Playing the Game"

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