The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks that, along with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., make up the United States' central bank. Missouri is the only state to have two main branches of Federal Reserve Banks. (Kansas City also has a bank). Located in downtown St. Louis, the St. Louis Fed is the headquarters of the Eighth Federal Reserve District, which includes the state of Arkansas and portions of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, the eastern half of Missouri and West Tennessee. It has branches in Little Rock, Louisville and Memphis. Its building, at 411 Locust Street, was designed by St. Louis firm Mauran, Russell & Crowell in 1924. The Eighth District serves as a center for local, national and global economic research, and provides the following services: supervisory and regulatory services to state-member banks and bank holding companies; cash and coin-handling for the District and beyond; economic education; and community development resources.
The following people serve on the board of directors as of May 17, 2017.
|Daniel J. Ludeman||President and CEO
Concordance Academy of Leadership
St. Louis, Missouri
|James M. McKelvey, Jr.||General Partner
|D. Bryan Jordan||Chairman, President and CEO
First Horizon National Corporation
|Susan S. Stephenson||Co-Chairman and President
|Alice K. Houston||CEO
HJI Supply Chain Solutions
|John N. Roberts III||President and CEO
|Patricia L. Clarke||President and CEO
First National Bank of Raymond
|Chairman, President and CEO
St. Louis, Missouri
|President and CEO
St. Louis, Missouri
James Bullard took office as president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in April 2008. He directs the activities of the bank's head office in St. Louis as well as its three branches in Little Rock, Louisville and Memphis. In addition, he participates in the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), the Federal Reserve's principal monetary policymaking body. Bullard is an accomplished economic theorist, whose fundamental contributions to monetary economics and policy analysis are highly regarded in the profession. Bullard joined the research division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in 1990 and attained positions of increasing responsibility. Prior to being appointed president, he was deputy director of research for monetary analysis.
Congress gave the Federal Reserve responsibility for setting monetary policy under the Federal Reserve Act of 1913 so that actions taken by the central bank would be free from political concerns. Along with the other 11 regional Feds, the St. Louis Fed helps guide the nation's economy by participating on the Federal Open Market Committee. Advised by the research division staff, President James Bullard contributes informed opinions about national and district conditions, and participates in FOMC decisions concerning monetary policy, including setting the federal funds rate.
The St. Louis Fed supervises state-member banks and bank holding companies, and, since the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act, savings and loan holding companies. The Banking Supervision and Regulation division, led by executive vice president Julie Stackhouse, is tasked with assessing the safety and soundness of financial institutions' assets and operations, the effectiveness of their risk management practices, and their compliance with laws and regulations governing activities and consumer protection. Examiners collect and verify data from financial institutions to ensure an accurate accounting of financial institutions' conditions, as well as data on the money and reserves in the banking system. The Federal Reserve is considered the "lender of last resort" for financial institutions, and the St. Louis Fed is tasked with ensuring adequate liquidity in financial markets by making loans to depository institutions through the "discount window" and allowing the prudent use of intraday credit. The St. Louis Fed processes bank applications for acquisitions and new activities.
Twelve senior executives of banks, thrift institutions and credit unions in the Eighth District serve on the St. Louis Fed's Community Depository Institutions Advisory Council (CDIAC), which meets twice a year to advise the St. Louis Fed president on the credit, banking and economic conditions facing the members' institutions and communities. The chairman of the St. Louis Fed's CDIAC represents the Eighth District at the Board of Governors' CDIAC meetings, held twice annually. Banking-related publications include Central Banker, which features analysis of banking conditions, trends and regulatory matters, as well as quarterly banking performance data, tailored to bank executives in the Eighth District.
As part of Banking Supervision and Regulation, the St. Louis Fed's Community Development department provides financial institutions and others with information on the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA), community and economic development, and issues related to credit access. The department also facilitates partnerships between lenders and their communities and seeks to generate economic development and affordable housing throughout the Eighth District. Executives from organizations throughout the district serve on the St. Louis Fed's Community Development Advisory Council, which was created to keep the St. Louis Fed's president and community development staff informed about development issues and to suggest ways the bank might support local development efforts. The executives are all experts in community and economic development and represent nonprofit organizations, financial institutions, universities, local governments and foundations. Community Development holds many events throughout the year, covering such topics as the impact and possible solutions to foreclosures and vacancies, neighborhood revitalization, rebuilding household balance sheets, and reaching the unbanked and underbanked. Publications include Bridges, a quarterly publication for community organizations and leaders.
The St. Louis Fed's research division, led by senior vice president Christopher J. Waller, produces economic research for a wide range of national and international audiences. In the 1960s, the St. Louis Fed garnered a reputation as a maverick in the Federal Reserve System because of its espousal of monetarism. Spurred by bank president Darryl Francis and research director Homer Jones, the bank's economists published research showing a direct relationship between the growth of money and inflation. Monetarist theories have since been adopted widely.
Four times a year, St. Louis Fed economists release the Burgundy Books, patterned after the Federal Reserve System's Beige Book, as an economic snapshot of the four zones in the district (Little Rock, Louisville, Memphis and St. Louis). The Burgundy Books collect data and anecdotal feedback from numerous sources to help track the district's consumer spending, commercial and residential real estate, manufacturing and industrial activities, banking data and more.
Research publications include the Review, a journal of national and international economic developments, particularly focusing on their monetary aspects; Economic Synopses, short essays and reports on the economic issues of the day; and The Regional Economist, a magazine with articles written largely by economists but for readers who, for the most part, aren't economists.
The St. Louis Fed's research division maintains FRED (Federal Reserve Economic Data), a database of over 237,000 economic time series from 68 national, international, private and public sources. Data series include interest rates, gross domestic product and its components, GDP and gross national product together, employment and population, consumer price indexes, monetary aggregates and Treasury constant maturity. FRED and the other free online data services--ALFRED, GeoFRED, CASSIDI and FRASER--are collectively, with other research sites, accessed several million times a year. Writing at Business Insider, Joe Weisenthal called FRED "The most amazing economics website in the world." The bank also maintains the Research Papers in Economics (RePEc) database, a listing of economics authors and the Economics Departments, Institutes and Research Centers in the World (EDIRC) databases.
The St. Louis Fed's Econ Lowdown provides a variety of free online tools for K-16 educators nationwide, including online courses, audio and video podcasts, apps, personal finance chats, and PDF and interactive whiteboard versions of lesson plans. The economics topics covered include basic concepts such as opportunity cost and supply and demand to more complex topics such as comparative advantage and monetary policy. In personal finance, the topics include earning income, taxes, budgeting, saving, banks and credit cards. Economic education staff provide in-service workshops for K-12 educators, as well as conferences and workshops at the bank and its branches for K-16 educators. Economic Education publishes two newsletters: Inside the Vault and Page One Economics. Another publication, In Plain English, is a multimedia online course on the structure and functions of the Federal Reserve System. Many materials, including personal finance online courses and personal finance chats, are available in Spanish as well as English.
The St. Louis Fed supports the U.S. Treasury with a number of functions. Led by senior vice president Kathleen O. Paese, the Treasury Services division includes the Treasury Relations and Support Office (TRSO), which manages the Federal Reserve System's overall relationships with the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Bureau of the Public Debt, Financial Management Service and Office of Fiscal Assistant Secretary. The St. Louis Fed's Treasury Relations and Systems Support (TRASS) office provides tax collection, cash management and reporting services to the U.S. Treasury, and serves as the offering administrator for the Fed's Term Deposit Facility.
Beginning in the mid-2000s, the Federal Reserve consolidated its check-handling services as the number of paper checks fell rapidly in favor of check cards, debit cards and electronic bill payments. The most recently completed payments study (released in late 2010) revealed that more than three-quarters of noncash payments in America were done electronically. On March 3, 2010, the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland became the Fed's single paper check processing and adjustments site and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta became the Fed's single electronic check processing site. However, the St. Louis Fed still serves as the nation's central processing site for Treasury checks and postal money orders. As led by senior vice president Karl W. Ashman, the St. Louis Fed provides currency and coin handling services for the Eighth District and beyond, which includes helping to ensure that depository institutions have enough currency and coin to meet public demand through currency ordering and depositing services. The St. Louis Fed also checks currency for fit status (money that can still be circulated), destroys notes that can no longer be circulated and reports counterfeit money to the United States Secret Service.
The St. Louis Fed holds several events annually for educators, civic and business leaders, bankers and more throughout the district. These include the "Dialogue with the Fed" events for the public, in which St. Louis Fed experts discuss economic matters such as the federal deficit, the financial crisis and unemployment; and "Economic Briefings," where a Fed economist or other expert discusses the current local and national economy. The St. Louis Fed also features research symposiums, educator workshops and special presentations on topics such as the cost of higher education and recession demographics.
As with all Federal Reserve banks, the St. Louis Fed established an Office of Minority and Women Inclusion (OMWI) in January 2011, as called for by the Dodd-Frank Act. The St. Louis OMWI is designed to increase participation of minority- and women-owned businesses in Bank procurement needs, further diversify the St. Louis Fed's workforce at all levels, and support financial literacy efforts at inner-city, girls' and majority-minority high schools. Kathy Freeman, vice president of diversity and inclusion, is the St. Louis Fed's OMWI director.