Ways through Which Central Banks Control the Supply Of Money

Feb 27, 2024 By Triston Martin

If a country's economy were a human body, then the nation's central bank would represent the heart. And in the same way that the heart pumps blood throughout the body, which is necessary for life, the central bank works to keep the economy healthy and thriving by injecting money into it. Sometimes economies need a lower amount of money, while others require a higher amount. This frees up assets held by the bank, which means they now have more cash available to lend. Increasing the amount of money circulating in the economy often involves a central bank making purchases.


The Federal Reserve, sometimes referred to as the Fed, serves as the nation's central bank in the United States. The European Central Bank, the Swiss National Bank, the Bank of England, the People's Bank of China, and the Bank of Japan are a few examples of other notable central banks. Let's look at some of the most frequent methods that central banks use to regulate the money supply, often known as the quantity of money currently circulating across a nation.


Why It Is Important to Know How Much Money You Have


Both microeconomic and macroeconomic patterns may be influenced by the amount of money flowing within an economy. People and companies will spend more if there is an abundant supply of free and easy money since it will be easier to get their hands on. It is now simpler for individuals to get funding for personal loans, automobile loans, and mortgages, and it is also simpler for businesses to obtain financing. At the macroeconomic level, the quantity of money flowing in an economy affects various factors, including gross domestic product, general growth, interest rates, and unemployment rates.


Create Currency


There was a period when countries linked their currencies to a gold standard, restricting the number of goods they could manufacture. However, this practice was discontinued in the middle of the 20th century. Even though there will be repercussions for their actions, they can print unlimited money.


Adjust the Minimum Required Reserve Amount


The reserve requirement is one of the fundamental ways that all central banks exercise control over the total amount of money in an economy. As a result, there is always some amount of money that is held in reserve and is never put into circulation. Let's say that the reserve requirement has been established at 9 percent by the central bank. If the total deposits at a commercial bank get to $100 million, the bank must put aside $9 million to fulfill the reserve requirement. It's possible to put the remaining 91 million dollars into the market.



Affect the Interest Rates


There are very few circumstances in which a central bank can directly determine the interest rates that apply to loans such as mortgages, vehicle loans, or personal loans. However, the central bank has some instruments at its disposal to coax interest rates closer to levels deemed appropriate. For instance, the key to the policy rate, which is the interest rate at which commercial banks are permitted to borrow from the central bank, is held by the central bank (in the United States, this is called the federal discount rate). Sometimes economies need a lower amount of money, while others require a higher amount.


When banks can borrow money at a reduced interest rate from the central bank, they can pass these savings through to their clients in the form of lower interest rates on loans. When interest rates are reduced, there is often a rise in borrowing, which results in a greater amount of money being circulated.


Engage in Open Market Operations


By purchasing or selling government assets on the open market, often known as "open market operations," central banks can influence the total amount of money in circulation (OMO). Increasing the amount of money circulating in the economy often involves a central bank making purchases. This frees up assets held by the bank, which means they now have more cash available to lend.


Introduce a Quantitative Easing Program


If the economy is particularly precarious, central banks can expand their open market operations into a quantitative easing program. In the context of quantitative easing, the process whereby central banks produce new money and then utilize it to purchase assets and securities such as government bonds is known as money creation. This cash is deposited into the banking system as soon as it is obtained as a payment for the assets that the central bank acquired.


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