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Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System
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Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Federal Open Market Committee

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About the FOMC

The term "monetary policy" refers to the actions undertaken by a central bank, such as the Federal Reserve, to influence the availability and cost of money and credit to help promote national economic goals. The Federal Reserve Act of 1913 gave the Federal Reserve responsibility for setting monetary policy.

The Federal Reserve controls the three tools of monetary policy--open market operations, the discount rate, and reserve requirements. The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System is responsible for the discount rate and reserve requirements, and the Federal Open Market Committee is responsible for open market operations. Using the three tools, the Federal Reserve influences the demand for, and supply of, balances that depository institutions hold at Federal Reserve Banks and in this way alters the federal funds rate. The federal funds rate is the interest rate at which depository institutions lend balances at the Federal Reserve to other depository institutions overnight.

Changes in the federal funds rate trigger a chain of events that affect other short-term interest rates, foreign exchange rates, long-term interest rates, the amount of money and credit, and, ultimately, a range of economic variables, including employment, output, and prices of goods and services.

Structure of the FOMC

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) consists of twelve members--the seven members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System; the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; and four of the remaining eleven Reserve Bank presidents, who serve one-year terms on a rotating basis. The rotating seats are filled from the following four groups of Banks, one Bank president from each group: Boston, Philadelphia, and Richmond; Cleveland and Chicago; Atlanta, St. Louis, and Dallas; and Minneapolis, Kansas City, and San Francisco. Nonvoting Reserve Bank presidents attend the meetings of the Committee, participate in the discussions, and contribute to the Committee's assessment of the economy and policy options.

The FOMC holds eight regularly scheduled meetings per year. At these meetings, the Committee reviews economic and financial conditions, determines the appropriate stance of monetary policy, and assesses the risks to its long-run goals of price stability and sustainable economic growth.

For more detail on the FOMC and monetary policy, see section 2 of the brochure on the structure of the Federal Reserve System and chapter 2 of Purposes & Functions of the Federal Reserve System. FOMC Rules and Authorizations are also available online.

2014 Members of the FOMC

Federal Reserve Bank Rotation on the FOMC

Committee membership changes at the first regularly scheduled meeting of the year.

  2015 2016 2017
Members New York
Chicago
Richmond
Atlanta
San Francisco
New York
Cleveland
Boston
St. Louis
Kansas City
New York
Chicago
Philadelphia
Dallas
Minneapolis
Alternate
Members
New York†
Cleveland
Boston
St. Louis
Kansas City
New York†
Chicago
Philadelphia
Dallas
Minneapolis
New York†
Cleveland
Richmond
Atlanta
San Francisco

 †For the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the First Vice President is the alternate for the President. Return to table

For additional information, please use the FOMC FOIA request form.

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Last update: June 16, 2014