Numerous offices and entities support our financial markets and strive to regulate them in a manner good for us all. Crises bring attention to them buy not always a clear view or reminder of what they do. Today, I am focusing on some interesting aspects of our Treasury.
“Created in Congress’ first session in 1789, the Treasury is the oldest and arguably most prestigious federal department and the only one with its own tunnel to the White House. Secretaries of the Treasury have always been among the most prominent cabinet members, starting with the first, Alexander Hamilton. The Treasury’s formal responsibilities are quite prosaic: It collects taxes and manages the national debt.
Informally, the Treasury Secretary’s main job is chief economic spokesman of the administration and indeed the country. His actual influence varies. He may be a major architect of economic policy or he may mostly recite White House talking points.
The Treasury Secretary has formidable advantages: a gigantic staff of experts and desk officers and a rolodex of finance ministers and central bankers from around the world. The Treasury Secretary is official spokesman of the dollar, and traders cling to his words like burrs to his clothes.” ~Greg Ip / The Little Book of Economics
TREASURES & TREASURE HUNTING
Few websites offer more treasures than www.treasury.gov. All you have to do is hunt. Among all the data are things like this:
* Attractive graphs of yield curve on US Treasury issues
* Photo of Secretary Geithner’s 50th birthday cupcake
* An auction link !!!
The Treasury holds over 300 auctions each year where you can bid on some real national treasures including seized property which may include real estate, jewels, vehicles, boats and some items that make you really proud to be an American.
Seriously though, the website is a valuable source of credible data that is important to us all. I hope you will visit it once in awhile.
Until next week,
Susan R. Linkous