No matter; up on the Fed site is a press release detailing how the swap lines have been opened once again to ringfence Euro-troubles:
In response to the re-emergence of strains in U.S. dollar short-term funding markets in Europe, the Bank of Canada, the Bank of England, the European Central Bank, the Federal Reserve, and the Swiss National Bank are announcing the re-establishment of temporary U.S. dollar liquidity swap facilities. These facilities are designed to help improve liquidity conditions in U.S. dollar funding markets and to prevent the spread of strains to other markets and financial centers. The Bank of Japan will be considering similar measures soon. Central banks will continue to work together closely as needed to address pressures in funding markets.In a context perhaps not so far removed from what we are experiencing now, Nicolas van de Walle once wrote about African Economics and the Politics of Permanent Crisis as African countries dealt with structural adjustment programmes--and not always in a positive manner. You can say we have similar politics nowadays, even if the countries undergoing crises and, yes, structural adjustment of their fiscal situations lie not in Africa but at the very heart of the Western world. The more things change...
Federal Reserve Actions
The Federal Open Market Committee has authorized temporary reciprocal currency arrangements (swap lines) with the Bank of Canada, the Bank of England, the European Central Bank (ECB), and the Swiss National Bank. The arrangements with the Bank of England, the ECB, and the Swiss National Bank will provide these central banks with the capacity to conduct tenders of U.S. dollars in their local markets at fixed rates for full allotment, similar to arrangements that had been in place previously. The arrangement with the Bank of Canada would support drawings of up to $30 billion, as was the case previously.
These swap arrangements have been authorized through January 2011. Further details on these arrangements will be available shortly.