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The Federal Reserve and the Financial Crisis by Ben S. Bernanke

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LECTURE 1

Origins and Mission of the Federal Reserve

What I want to talk about in these four lectures is the Federal Reserve and the financial crisis. My thinking about this is conditioned by my experience as an economic historian. When one talks about the issues that occurred over the past few years, I think it makes the most sense to consider them in the broader context of central banking as it has been practiced over the centuries. So, even though I am going to focus in these lectures quite a bit on the financial crisis and how the Fed responded, I need to go back and look at the broader context. As I talk about the Fed, I will talk about the origin and mission of central banks in general; in looking at previous financial crises, most notably ...

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