Transcripts of the monetary policymaking body of the Federal Reserve from 2002–2008.

Thank you. I’m going to open up in a minute to questions for Bill, Nathan, and Bill. I want to say just three brief things about the emerging market swaps. First, we have been talking with these countries for some time, and I think when the conversations began it was more of a preventive measure than a response to conditions. But the EMEs are now at a flashpoint in the financial crisis, and as I think Linda Kole will probably discuss, the urgency has increased, and the risks to the broader global economy are probably higher than they were a few weeks ago. Second, with respect to the choice of four countries that Nathan proposed—as he mentioned, we have talked to the Treasury and the State Department. I spoke to Secretaries Paulson and Rice about this. There was an interesting confluence of agreement that, if you are going to do this, these are the right four countries and we probably shouldn’t do more, both from an economic perspective and a diplomatic perspective in the sense that these are the countries that among the emerging markets are the most important from a financial and economic point of view. Third, as I think Nathan also mentioned, the IMF is planning to create a liquidity facility, which will be a low-conditionality facility available to a broad range of countries. So there has been some discussion back and forth about the relationship between this, if we do it, and the IMF facility. I had a conversation this morning with Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the IMF, and we agreed that the two facilities are complementary—that ours would provide important additional resources to the total availability of liquid resources for these countries. If we decide to take this step, we have agreed that tomorrow, after the IMF board approves their facility, we would jointly announce these two actions so that it would create an impression of cooperation and coordination between the Federal Reserve and the IMF.

So those are just a few additional pieces of information. I’m sure that you have plenty of questions. Who is first? No one? Ah, President Fisher.

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