Central Banks and Their Activities

Being the country’s largest bank, Central bank regulates the national economy climate and creates conditions for its successful development. Central banks of different countries can be called state, national, reserve or issuing.

Since Central banks deal with global movement of cash between different financial institutions, their activity greatly affects the currency rates fluctuations. Financial market by virtue of its dynamic reflects whatsoever is happening in the form of exchange rate variations.

Thus, Central bank is an active market participant: it intervenes in the foreign exchange market in order to set the reserve requirement, stabilize the benchmark interest rate and maintain the current fiscal policy.

The major banks having impact on global economy are considered to be:

-The Federal Reserve System, the Fed. It was established on December 23, 1913 as independent financial body which fulfills the functions of central bank and exerts control over the US commercial banking system. The FED activity is carried out by presidentially appointed Board of Governors. The Federal Reserve is comprised of 12 Reserve banks, the major of which, Bank of New York, is responsible for foreign financial relations.

- The European Central Bank, the ECB. This organization was created on June 1, 1998. Its main office is located in Frankfurt am Main, Germany and consists of representatives of all Euro area countries. The ECB was founded with the purpose of providing price stability within European monetary union by means of HICP growth by 2% annually (but not more than that). The ECB is discussing economic conditions, fiscal policy, and set the interest rates on its meetings.

-Bank of England (Old Lady of Threadneedle Street). Was established in 1694. In 1946 the BoE was nationalized and became an independent public organization in 1997. Its primary function is to develop financial system of Great Britain and ensure its stability.

-Swiss National Bank, SNB. Despite other banks, SNB does not apply refinance rate in order to regulate the rate of national currency. It controls fiscal policy in Switzerland and has a high level of independence.

-Japan Ministry of Finance and its Central bank is the most important political and fiscal organization in the country which can influence the market. It is even more powerful than the U.S., Great Britain, and Germany Treasury Departments. The decisions made by Japan Ministry of Finance affect the global economy and predetermine USD/JPY rate.