Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-08) today directed the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to conduct an audit of the Federal Reserve System and report back to Congress its findings and recommendations.
"Transparency is essential to free markets to operating properly," said Fitzpatrick. "Conducting an audit of the Federal Reserve System is a critical component to re-establishing faith and trust in our economic institutions. This bill can support that goal."
"The operations of an institution which wields such considerable influence over our everyday lives must be made to be beyond reproach," Continued Fitzpatrick, "This is a step in the right direction to re-building our economy."
H.R. 459, the Federal Reserve Transparency Act calls for an audit of the Federal Reserve within 12 months of the date of enactment, with a report to be delivered to Congress within 90 days of completion of the audit. The audit must include a detailed description of the findings of the audit with GAO's recommendations for legislative and administrative action.
The bill would also direct the GAO to conduct an audit of the files of certain residential mortgage loans in foreclosure in 2009 and 2010. The Federal Reserve has required regulated financial institutions which service these loans to hire independent consultants to undertake reviews of these files because they were found to have been improperly reviewed prior to putting them into foreclosure. Specifically, the bill would require the GAO to conduct an audit of the Federal Reserve's enforcement actions with regard to these loan file reviews and to make a report to Congress within six months of the date of enactment of this Act.