Saturday, December 24, 2011

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Overview |

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Overview |

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Rob Harrington Contemplates the Death of His Father & Foreclosures

Independence Day?
July 4th, 2010 ---

Contributed by Rob Harrington

Today, I will remember my father who passed away so recently. He was a retired officer of the United States Air Force. A fervent defender of the Constitution and of fact and law, and an avid student of History, this highly decorated, honest man devoted his entire life to preserving our noble freedoms.
Last Memorial day in Washington D.C., as my mother and I visited Arlington National Cemetery where he is to be buried with full military honors, 100,000′s of Vietnam veterans were also visiting D.C. for “Rolling Thunder” to also pay their respects to fallen brothers and sisters of the Vietnam War. This was the same War my father earned a Bronze Star among many other decorations for valor and dedication while risking his own personal safety and life.

It was that Sunday I picked out a book in his vast historical library to begin a read for the long, sad trip home back to Florida. Florida is where I have been fighting fraud and for property rights for several long, frustrating years. The book I chose was written about the Vietnam War entitled The War of the Innocents by Charles Bracelen Flood. Published in 1970, Mr Flood foresaw the main reason WHY the South Vietnamese and the U.S. would EVENTUALLY LOSE the war against the Communist Viet Cong. The ex-Army, Harvard graduate keenly observed that the poor Vietnamese peasant farmers were CONSTANTLY having their PROPERTIES SEIZED ILLEGALLY BY A CORRUPT GOVERNMENT AND THEIR CORRUPT, WEALTHY BUSINESS PARTNERS.

The constant harassment, removal, and dislocation of the poor, peasant farmers and their families contributed greatly to the lack of support of their corrupt Saigon Government, and indeed the lack of responsibility of its own soldiers and citizens to fight effectively against the Communists.In 2010, even an 8 year old being removed from their home due to a questionable foreclosure could draw the same conclusion regarding a corrupt system that aids and abets illegal and fraudulent harassment, removal and dislocation of too many families who’s unalienable rights are being denied. Today, I will remember the millions of Americans who were defrauded by the Banks and are now being removed from their homes by the very governments who were supposed to protect them. Their protections are DENIED almost daily by the very consumer laws that are NOT being enforced nor upheld.


Tomorrow, I begin researching “Fraud on the Courts” on forged complaints and so-called “supporting” documents made by so-called “officers of the court” in yet another legal battle on a case already dismissed once before.

Today, on the morning of the 4th of July, I will miss my father terribly. Today, I weep in utter despair as I write this message to whoever cares to read it. I sincerely question that his whole life was dedicated to being deceived by a collossal lie?

On July 4th, 2010, this is NOT a happy day for me. Is this really Independence Day in foreclosureland?
Rob Harrington
Rob Harrington
VP/Business Development - BPIA
direct contact: (850) 259-6422
BP Investigative Agency, LLC
5200 SW Meadows, Ste. 150
Lake Oswego, OR 97035

Fax: (503) 726-5911

Friday, December 16, 2011


On December 15, 2011, Catherine Cortez Masto, Attorney General of Nevada, filed Case No: A-11-653289-B in Dept XI on behalf of the State of Nevada versus Lender Processing Services, Inc; Fidelity National Information Service, Inc; LPS Default Solutions, Inc; DOCX, LLC, and various does in the District Court of Clark County, Nevada.

This complaint is enlightening for Washington Mutual borrowers who are being foreclosed by JPMorgan Chase Bank NA which utilizes the services of LPS to foreclose.We've heard about the robosigning but the list of abuses is piling up.  How long will LPS and Chase get away with foreclosing without accountability in California and other states?

The complaint alleges that LPS falsified, forged and/or fraudulently executed an unknown number of foreclosure-related documents in Nevada and elsewhere in the country; that LPS filed or knew would be filed in Nevada courts and/or with county recorders in Nevada; that LOPS knew would be provided to consumers; and that LPS transmitted to its mortgage servicer clients (Servicers such as JPMorgan Chase Bank NA); that LPS knew homeowners, courts, attorneys and Services would rely on these documents to pursue foreclosures on Nevada homeowners.

Further allegations:  

That allegedly LPS improperly directs and/or controls the work of foreclosure attorneys in the LPS Network.  LPS claims to be a mere technology provider and administrative middle-man when it actually handles core responsibilities traditionally in the purview of Servicers. 

And the list of issues goes on and on -- where are the prosecutions and complaints in California?
Where does AG Kamala Harris stand on this?

To review the complaint go to:

OCC Issues Guidance On Foreclosures For Banks–Check Out The Rules They Are Supposed To Comply With


Wednesday, December 7, 2011

JPMorgan to Fight Mortgage Investors for 'Years': Dimon

Try Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS
Financial Services

JPMorgan to Fight Mortgage Investors for 'Years': Dimon

Shanthi Bharatwaj

12/07/11 - 02:49 PM EST
NEW YORK (TheStreet) --JPMorgan Chase(JPM) CEO Jamie Dimon told investors Wednesday that the bank has built significant reserves for mortgage-related claims, but will emerge victorious from a prolonged litigation battle.

"We have hired top lawyers", Dimon said, and the bank has numerous legal and technical defenses, including the fact that investors were sophisticated and that the disclosures were clear. He also said damages are difficult to prove because so much of the loss may have stemmed from economic decline. "Housing prices fell 40%; hard to argue it was due to something else," he said.

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon
The bank faces litigation over $54.9 billion of original mortgage balances (excluding Washington Mutual) in the form of securities lawsuits and repurchase claims. But investors demanding repurchases are also likely to face substantial hurdles in challenging the bank.

"In either case, claimants are potentially facing years of litigation," Dimon said in his presentation.
In the case of repurchase claims, investors have to do a loan-by-loan analysis in order to prove that a breach in underwriting standards "materially and adversely" affected the value of the loan. The process can be lengthy and decidedly more difficult for private label investors compared to the GSE experience, according to Dimon.

The FHFA has the right to subpoena this information on behalf of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, but private label investors need to file a lawsuit to obtain these files or require about 25% to 50% of investor voting rights to get the trustee to obtain this information from the servicer.

He added that there is a significant overlap between repurchase and securities exposure. "We do not intend to pay twice for the same exposure," he said.

--Written by Shanthi Bharatwaj in New York

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Shanthi Bharatwaj.
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Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Banksters $7.7 Trillion -- yes TRILLION $ - Bailout

What about the $7.7 TRILLION bailout they "the banks" and "our government" forgot to mention.  Makes TARP look like peanuts. Truly the banks get bailed out and we continue to get sold out.  If the banks would refinance the homes of distressed homeowners at the 0.01% interest rate that the Fed gave the banks, we could all save our homes. 
Jon Stewart sums it up beautifully and asks "Why the bleep did Martha Stewart go to jail?"  
My question is this:  When are the banksters going to jail?
Here is Eliot Spitzer's take on this story:

Monday, November 28, 2011

City of St. Clair Shores Employees' Retirement System v. LPS et al. Amended Complaint May 18, 2011

To learn more about Lender Processing Services, let me recommend that you take a look an this Amended Complaint filed May 18, 2011 in US District Court in Jacksonville, Florida filed by the City of St. Clair Shores Employees Retirement System versus Lender Processing Services et al.  The case addresses foreclosure issues and "illicit practices to push through foreclosures."

Understanding How Lender Processing Services Works --- The 30(b)(6) Deposition of LPS Employee, Christian S. Hymer

To get a better understanding of the role Lender Processing Services and its alter egos play in the foreclosure game, check out the 30(b)(6) Deposition of LPS staffer, Christian S. Hymer dated January 13, 2010.  

Go to:

Saturday, November 26, 2011

JPMorgan Sued by BayernLB Over Mortgage-Backed Securities

By David McLaughlin – Nov 22, 2011 

JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), the biggest U.S. bank by assets, was sued for fraud by German lender Bayerische Landesbank over losses on about $2.1 billion in mortgage-backed securities.

JPMorgan units concealed the truth about the poor quality of the loans underlying the securities and knew that credit ratings misrepresented their risk, BayernLB said in a lawsuit filed yesterday in New York State Supreme Court.

“This misconduct has resulted in astounding rates of default on the loans,” BayernLB said. Most of the securities have been downgraded to junk, it said.

The lender said it believed the mortgage securities were safe investments based on representations about the quality of loans and credit ratings when it invested almost $2.1 billion in 57 offerings from 2005 to 2007, according to the complaint. The lawsuit names JPMorgan and other units of the New York-based bank as defendants.

Jennifer Zuccarelli, a spokeswoman for JPMorgan, declined to comment on the lawsuit.
The case is Bayerische Landesbank New York Branch v. Bear Stearns & Co., 653239/2011, New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Manhattan).

To contact the reporter on this story: David McLaughlin in New York at
To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Pickering at

BayernLB or Bayerische Landesbank (Bavarian State Bank) is a publicly regulated bank based in Munich, Germany and one of the eight Landesbanken. It is 94% owned by the free state of Bavaria (indirectly via BayernLB Holding AG) and 6% owned by the Sparkassenverband Bayern, the umbrella organization of Bavarian Sparkassen. With a balance of €416 billion and 19,200 employees (in the group; 5,170 in the bank itself), it is the eighth-largest financial institution in Germany.

As a commercial bank, BayernLB offers private and commercial customers a universal range of services in private, industrial, investment and foreign business. This includes loans, securities trading and asset management, as well as mid-term and long-term bond issuance and securitization. The bank is refinanced through a variety of commercial debenture instruments.

As a state and municipal bank, BayernLB is responsible for comprehensive credit and financial counsel for the state of Bavaria and its municipalities and districts.

Through its subsidiaries, the bank is involved in a variety of further business areas. The Bayerische Landesbodenkreditanstalt is an organ of state housing policy, while the LBS Bayern is a public building society (Bausparkasse). Through its full ownership of the Deutsche Kreditbank, based in Berlin, BayernLB is also involved in retail banking.

In early 2008 it was revealed that BayernLB had made large losses due to investments in sub-prime mortgage securities in the United States. Although the extent of these investments has been the topic of speculation, it was revealed from the company's Q2 2008 financial report that over €24 billion had been invested in critical securities, with losses of €2.3 billion in 2007 and a further €2 billion in the first quarter of 2008.

The heavy public criticism took its first toll in March, 2008 when CEO Werner Schmidt resigned. The crisis also consumed the governing CSU party and its chairman, Erwin Huber, who as Bavarian Minister of Finance was the acting chair of the bank's Administrative Council and was accused of covering up the extent of losses.The bank and the losses were major factors in the September, 2008 parliamentary elections, in which the CSU had its worst election result since 1962 and Huber resigned.
The bank's shares slipped more than 2% after the country's central bank said it was time to roll back some of its economic support measures after recent crisis. The bank representatives advise economy was not ready for an increase in borrowing costs, and so the goal is to keep interest rates on hold. But it said it would end some of the measures it had introduced during the global downturn to increase the amount of money in the financial system. The German economy has continued to grow during the downturn. This is in stark contrast to more developed economies that fell into recession.

Company Overview
Bayerische Landesbank primarily provides commercial banking products and services to large, middle-market corporate, and retail customers in Europe and internationally. It provides direct banking for retail customers; residential mortgage lending; municipal lending; energy and infrastructure project financing for small and medium enterprises; private banking; corporate banking; and international financing services. The company also offers private equity services; and special funds and real estate funds for institutional investors, as well as management services for BayernLB funds, DKB funds, and BayernLB Invest funds.
Brienner Stra├če 18
Munich,  80333
Founded in 1884
10,754 Employees

Key Executives 

Mr. Gerd Hausler 

Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Administration Board

Age: 59

Chairman of the Administration Board and Member of the Economic Advisory Council

Chief Financial Officer
Age: 44

Chief Risk Officer and Member of the Board of Management

Deputy Chief Executive Officer and Member of the Management Board
Age: 54
Compensation as of Fiscal Year 2011.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Deloiotte Touche -- Foreclosure Review Process for JPMorgan Chase Bank NA

Cummings Calls for Unredacted Copies of “Engagement Letters” Between Mortgage Servicing Companies and Private Consultants


Remember when Chase had thirty days to respond to the OCC on how they were going to fix their deficient foreclosure practices?  This is a status report and  includes what they consider deficient and what they assume has been done correctly.

All you have to do is look at the Deloite review procedure to tell that it is a cover intended to bless the mess and limit payouts by the banks to the injured.

Deloite is "assuming" that the loan and foreclosure documents are correct when they should be "investigating" to see if they are correct. Since there are so many loans in question any investigation has to perform a statistical sample of the documents for validity, fraud, etc.

JPMorgan’s Independent Foreclosure Review Firm Deloitte & Touche LLP Recenly Sued for Failing to Detect Fraud that Led to more than $7 Billion in Losses
Will the OCC audits be just another whitewash for homeowners?

Monday, November 21, 2011



For Immediate Release
November 21, 2011

California AG Kamala Harris joined California community groups who called for homeowner relief from foreclosures during the holiday season.

San Francisco, CA— A number of California community groups joined California Attorney General Kamala Harris on Monday afternoon to draw attention to the plight of homeowners facing foreclosure during the holiday season. The event was hosted by the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA) in San Francisco.

At a roundtable discussion with Attorney General Harris, homeowners shared their stories about how they have struggled to make their mortgage payments and work with their banks to modify their loans. Attorney General Harris outlined her office’s priorities for improving loan servicing and increasing transparency and accountability in the mortgage system.  

Darryl Davis, a MEDA client, spoke about his recent experience with foreclosure. After nearly a year of negotiations, Darryl and his two children were evicted from their home in late October. “This whole thing has been a nightmare for my family. The way these banks operate, where the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing, it’s incredible that they’re not held accountable,” said Mr. Davis. “I’m just a guy with limited means, going up against these institutions with unlimited means. I told my son that’s why we’re going to MEDA today. We need to let our voice be heard so that we can help others who are just like us.”

At the event, the Mission Economic Development Agency (MEDA), California Reinvestment Coalition (CRC), Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), PICO California, and the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL) joined together to call for immediate and long-term solutions that would ease the harmful effect of the ongoing foreclosure crisis and help homeowners stay in their homes.

The California groups highlighted the need for increased levels of principal reduction and ending the “dual track” servicing problem, and called for accountability of the banking system and restitution for homeowners who wrongfully lost their homes. In addition, the groups called for a foreclosure moratorium during the holiday season, to allow families to celebrate the holidays in peace and comfort.

The California groups committed to working in partnership with Attorney General Kamala Harris as she fights for short-term and long-term relief for California homeowners.

Media Contact: Kevin Stein, California Reinvestment Coalition, (415) 864-3980

Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment
California Reinvestment Coalition
Center for Responsible Lending
Mission Economic Development Agency

60 Minutes: Grover Norquist 'Likes Things Ugly, Has Characteristics of Protection Racket' |

60 Minutes: Grover Norquist 'Likes Things Ugly, Has Characteristics of Protection Racket' |

Sunday, October 30, 2011


It's time every American knows the truth about the Federal Reserve. The $16 Trillion Secret!

The Federal Reserve is an entity unto itself with no oversight and no accountability. It is out of control.

The Federal Reserve System, also known as "The Fed," is the central bank of the United States -- a bank for other banks and a bank for the federal government created to provide the nation with a safer, more flexible, and more stable monetary and financial system. Over the years, its role in banking and the economy has expanded. The Federal Reserve System is a network of twelve Federal Reserve Banks and a number of branches under the general oversight of the Board of Governors. The Reserve Banks are the operating arms of the central bank.
The first ever GAO Audit of the Federal Reserve was carried out in the past few months due to the Ron Paul, Alan Grayson Amendment to the Dodd-Frank Act passed last year. Jim DeMint, a Republican Senator, and Bernie Sanders, an independent Senator, led the charge for a Federal Reserve audit in the Senate. Ben Bernanke, Alan Greenspan, and various other bankers vehemently opposed the audit and lied to Congress about the effects an audit would have on markets. Nevertheless, the results of the first audit in the Federal Reserve's nearly 100 year history are posted on Senator Sander's webpage.

What was revealed in the audit was startling:  $16,000,000,000,000 (TRILLION) was secretly given out to US banks and corporations and foreign banks everywhere from France to Scotland.  To place $16 trillion into perspective:

  • The GDP of the United States is only $14.12 trillion. 
  • The entire national debt of the United States government spanning its 200+ year history is only $14.5 trillion.
  • The budget that is being debated so heavily in Congress and the Senate is only $3.5 trillion. 
  • Take all of the outrage and debate over the $1.5 trillion deficit into consideration.
  • SWALLOW THIS RED PILL: There was no debate about whether $16,000,000,000,000 would be given to failing banks & corporations around the world. 
In late 2008, the TARP Bailout bill was passed and loans of $800 billion were given to failing banks and companies. That was a blatant lie considering the fact that Goldman Sachs alone received 814 billion dollars. As is turns out, the Federal Reserve donated $2.5 trillion to Citigroup, while Morgan Stanley received $2.04 trillion. The Royal Bank of Scotland and Deutsche Bank, a German bank, split about a trillion and numerous other banks received hefty chunks of the $16 trillion
Between December 2007 and June 2010, the Federal Reserve secretly bailed out many of the world's banks, corporations, and governments. The Fed likes to refer to these secret bailouts as an all-inclusive loan program, but virtually none of the money (loaned out at 0% interest) has been returned. Why the Federal Reserve was never public about this or even informed the United States Congress about the $16 trillion dollar bailout is obvious:  the American public would have been outraged to find out that the Federal Reserve bailed out foreign banks while Americans were struggling to find jobs and losing our homes to foreclosure and being left homeless. 
The budget that is being debated so heavily in Congress and the Senate is only $3.5 trillion. Take all of the outrage and debate over the $1.5 trillion deficit into consideration.  Swallow this Red pill:    There was no debate about whether $16,000,000,000,000 would be given to failing banks and failing corporations around the world.
In late 2008, the TARP Bailout bill was passed and loans of $800 billion were given to failing banks and companies. That was a blatant lie considering the fact that Goldman Sachs alone received 814 billion dollars. As is turns out, the Federal Reserve donated $2.5 trillion to Citigroup, while Morgan Stanley received $2.04 trillion. The Royal Bank of Scotland and Deutsche Bank, a German bank, split about a trillion and numerous other banks received hefty chunks of the $16 trillion.

"This is a clear case of socialism for the rich and rugged, you-are-on-your-own individualism for everyone else." - Bernie Sanders(I-VT)
When you have conservative Republican stalwarts like Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Ron Paul (R-TX) as well as self-identified Democratic socialists like Bernie Sanders all fighting against the Federal Reserve, you know that it is no longer an issue of Right versus Left. When you have every single member of the Republican Party in Congress and progressive Congressmen like Dennis Kucinich sponsoring a bill to audit the Federal Reserve, you realize that the Federal Reserve is an entity onto itself, which has no oversight and no accountability. 

Americans should be swelled with anger and outrage at the abysmal state of affairs when an unelected group of bankers can create money out of thin air and give it out to mega-banks and super corporations like Halloween candy.

If the Federal Reserve and the bankers who control it believe that they can continue to devalue the savings of Americans and continue to destroy the US economy, they will have to face the realization that their trillion dollar printing presses can be stopped with five dollars' worth of bullets. Regardless of whether this money is fiat money (money printed with nothing of value to back it), if it is a currency forced on society and the world, with enforcement by the Fed, IRS, the U.S. military, et al, - which it is - the acts of the Federal Reserve are, in essence, the transfer of greater wealth to the rich insider banks and corporations, while the rest of the world grows poorer, and as the value of this funny money grows less and less in purchasing power. These insider banks, etc, then, exchange this funny money for gold and silver, the real wealth of the world, which, then, re-inflates the world with more and more devaluing federal reserve notes. This, then, creates hyper-inflation, increasing the cost of all resources and commodities, while gold and silver climb to never-seen-before levels of value. 

This is how the Federal Reserve insiders steal the wealth of the world and why the rich get richer while the poor get poorer. It's the world's largest Ponzi scheme! The Federal Reserve is nothing but a front for a small group of families who run a white collar criminal Ponzi scheme.

This criminal institution should be seized by the U.S. Treasury department and all assets frozen, and returned to the coffers of the U.S. Treasury in order to settle the U.S. debt and help begin to balance the U.S. deficit. All banks (listed below) should be forced to return the money received by the Federal Reserve. All families in ownership of the Fed and their agents should be located, caught, tried and jailed for grand larceny and treason against the people of the U.S.A. All government agents who protect and help facilitate this criminal organization should be fired from the positions and similarly tried and jailed for grand larceny and treason. Meanwhile, Congress should return our country to its original monetary system and, again, do its duty to regulate the coining of the currency of America as per the U.S. Constitution. 

The list of institutions that received the most money from the Federal Reserve can be found on page 131 of the GAO Audit and are as follows:

Citigroup: $2.5 trillion($2,500,000,000,000) 
Morgan Stanley: $2.04 trillion ($2,040,000,000,000) 
Merrill Lynch: $1.949 trillion ($1,949,000,000,000) 
Bank of America : $1.344 trillion ($1,344,000,000,000) 
Barclays PLC ( United Kingdom ): $868 billion* ($868,000,000,000) 
Bear Sterns: $853 billion ($853,000,000,000) 
Goldman Sachs: $814 billion ($814,000,000,000) 
Royal Bank of Scotland ( UK ): $541 billion ($541,000,000,000) 
JP Morgan Chase: $391 billion ($391,000,000,000) 
Deutsche Bank ( Germany ): $354 billion ($354,000,000,000) 
UBS ( Switzerland ): $287 billion ($287,000,000,000) 
Credit Suisse ( Switzerland ): $262 billion ($262,000,000,000) 
Lehman Brothers: $183 billion ($183,000,000,000) 
Bank of Scotland ( United Kingdom ): $181 billion ($181,000,000,000) 
BNP Paribas (France): $175 billion ($175,000,000,000)

Note that JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America, and Citigroup are among the top four foreclosing bank entities in the United States of America.

 Boardroom of the Federal Reserve
Members of the Board
Photo of Ben S. Bernanke
Ben S. Bernanke
Photo of Vice Chair Janet L. Yellen
Janet L. Yellen
Vice Chair
Photo of Elizabeth A. Duke
Elizabeth A. Duke
Photo of Daniel K. Tarullo
Daniel K. Tarullo
Photo of Sarah Bloom Raskin
Sarah Bloom Raskin

Federal Reserve Bank Presidents

The Federal Reserve Act provides that the president of a Federal Reserve Bank shall be the chief executive officer of the Bank, appointed by the board of directors of the Bank, with the approval of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, for a term of five years. The Federal Reserve Board of Governors is located in Washington, D.C.

The terms of all the presidents of the twelve District Banks run concurrently, ending on the last day of February of years numbered 6 and 1 (for example, 2001, 2006, and 2011). The appointment of a president who takes office after a term has begun ends upon the completion of that term. A president of a Reserve Bank may be reappointed after serving a full term or an incomplete term.

Reserve Bank presidents are subject to mandatory retirement upon becoming 65 years of age. However, presidents initially appointed after age 55 can, at the option of the board of directors, be permitted to serve until attaining ten years of service in the office or age 70, whichever comes first.

The modern federal banking system traces its origins to 1791, when Congress, at the urging of Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, established the First Bank of the United States. Headquartered in Philadelphia, the bank was given a twenty year charter, but many agrarian-minded Americans, uncomfortable with the idea of a large and powerful central bank, opposed it and Congress refused — by one vote — to renew it in 1811.

Congress once again created a central bank in 1816, in response to the inflation that resulted from the increase in banknotes printed to pay off the debt occasioned by the War of 1812. A little more than ten years after its opening, however, the new bank came into the cross hairs of Andrew Jackson, who worked to kill it after he was elected president in 1828. Jackson argued that the bank was corrupt and a threat to American liberties. In 1836, the Second Bank's charter was not renewed.

After the demise of the second bank, state-chartered and uncharted "free banks" took root. These banks issued their own notes, redeemable in gold or silver. Though the National Banking Act, passed in 1863, tried to provide a measure of currency stability, bank runs and financial panics remained common into the early 20th century. A bout of speculation on Wall Street that bottomed out in 1907, above, triggered a banking panic that led to calls to reform the banking system.

Congress created the Federal Reserve System on December 23, 1913, with the signing of the Federal Reserve Act by President Woodrow Wilson. The Federal Reserve System includes the Board of Governors and the twelve regional Reserve Banks. It took nearly a year from the time President Wilson signed the Act to determine the boundaries of the twelve Federal Reserve Districts and to establish the twelve regional Reserve Banks.

The seven members of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System are nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. A full term is fourteen years. One term begins every two years, on February 1 of even-numbered years. A member who serves a full term may not be reappointed. A member who completes an unexpired portion of a term may be reappointed. All terms end on their statutory date regardless of the date on which the member is sworn into office.

The Chairman and the Vice Chairman of the Board are named by the President from among the members and are confirmed by the Senate. They serve a term of four years. A member's term on the Board is not affected by his or her status as Chairman or Vice Chairman.

Despite the best intentions of the Federal Reserve Act, speculation on Wall Street continued apace, leading to a spectacular crash in October of 1929. Scholars have suggested that the massive financial crisis that ensued was made worse by the Fed's unwillingness to inject more money into the economy. In part because of this, nearly 10,000 banks failed between 1930 to 1933. In response to the crisis, Congress passed the Banking Act of 1933, also known as the Glass-Steagall Act, which called for the separation of commercial and investment banking; required the use of government securities as collateral for Federal Reserve notes; and established the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).

The Federal Reserve System takes in 12 regional reserve banks, each of which handles the needs of its respective region. Often called "Banker's Banks," they supervise the commercial banks in their areas, and store U.S. currency and coin, among other responsibilities.

In 1978, Congress enacted legislation requiring the Federal Reserve Chairman to appear before lawmakers twice a year to discuss monetary policy goals and objectives.  Paul Volcker, who was appointed by President Carter as Fed Chairman in 1979, testified before a Senate committee shortly after assuming office. Reappointed by President Reagan four years later, Volcker is widely credited with lowering inflation in the early 1980s.

Appointed by Ronald Reagan in 1987, Greenspan served under four presidents, retiring in 2006. During his almost twenty years as Fed Chairman, investors parsed and analyzed his public statements and countenance for clues about the Fed's plans. His statement that the Fed "affirmed its readiness to serve as a source of liquidity to support the economic and financial system," made shortly after the stock market crashed in 1987, is often credited for controlling the fallout from that crisis.

Having played a critical role in managing the financial crisis of 2008-2009, the Fed must now deal with a new set of challenges. In a speech before the Economic Club of Washington DC, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke noted that though the worst of the crisis seems to be over, "financial firms must do a better job of managing the risks of their business, regulators — the Federal Reserve included — must complete a thoroughgoing overhaul of their approach to supervision, and the Congress should move forward in making needed changes to our system of financial regulation to avoid a similar crisis in the future. In particular, we must solve the problem of 'too big to fail.'"