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Opinion
Brian Chappatta

Fed Aims to Radically Transform Funding Markets

A standing repo facility would potentially prevent the meltdowns of September 2019 and March 2020.

The promise of a permanent backstop would make government bonds a true cash equivalent for large banks.

The promise of a permanent backstop would make government bonds a true cash equivalent for large banks.

Photographer: Paul Yeung/Bloomberg

At the highest level, it looks as if the Federal Reserve hasn’t done much of anything for several months. Interest rates remained pinned near zero. Officials insist that any moves higher in inflation are transitory. Asset purchases continue unabated.

However, a significant shift appears to be brewing beneath the surface at the central bank that could drastically reshape a part of critical market plumbing, potentially preventing bouts of illiquidity in the $21.5 trillion Treasury market and altering balance-sheet calculations at the largest U.S. banks.