Saturday, May 8, 2010

Analyzing Non-Borrowed Reserve Trends

Now this is interesting.

(click for full size)

Latest Observations from the chart. (full data series available from The Fed):
2009-12 968.670
2010-01 966.727
2010-02 1113.265
2010-03 1094.656
2010-04 1036.615

We see a drop from Dec. to Jan., but then a spike from Jan to Feb. It might not be coincidental the stock market was dropping after Jan. Money that flees equity risk may have been parked into the safety of bank deposits for a period of time, faster than banks were making loans. But Feb. to Mar. to Apr. we see either money has been flowing out of banks, or banks are lending more reserves into new loans.

It will be interesting to see in June what happens in May as this early May market turmoil reveals itself in the national metrics of bank balances. If the previous paragraph correctly identified cash flows, we would expect May's non-borrowed reserves to be up, based on the theory that retail investors sweep their proceeds into bank accounts and professionals sweep their proceeds into Treasuries.

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