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Federal Reserve:
03-27-2007, 04:23 AM,
Federal Reserve:

March 26, 2007

Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago:
Dramatic Development

Last Friday, we noticed a news item that was picked up by the on-line news service, Freedom’s Phoenix Headline News out of Phoenix, Arizona.

The news story was titled, “Former Fed analyst questions M1 currency component spike prior to 9/11,” and was originally published on March 22 in the Muckraker Report.

The story is about William Bergman a senior analyst at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago whose employment with the Bank was abruptly terminated after he sought answers to a question relating to an investigation he had been directed to undertake.

According to the Muckraker Report, Bergman had noted that the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve had issued supervisory letters to the 12 Reserve Banks in the weeks after September 11, 2001 urging scrutiny of suspicious activity reports in tracking terrorism activity and financing. However, Bergman also noticed that the Board of Governors had issued a similar letter, albeit one that did not refer explicitly to terrorism, on August 2, 2001. According to Bergman, terrorism and terrorist financing were known to be part of ‘suspicious activity’ however, and the August 2, 2001 supervisory letter clearly called for scrutiny of suspicious activity, which implies and includes the tracking of terrorism activity and financing. In December, Bergman called the staff of the Board of Governors to ask why the Board had issued the August 2, 2001 letter.

Within two weeks Bergman’s assignment was abruptly terminated and his credentials canceled and he was forced to resign.

The Muckraker Report quotes Bergman saying,

“The currency component of M1 (Federal Reserve Notes circulating outside of banks) rose especially rapidly in July and August 2001. In fact, up to and including August 2001, that month (August 2001) was one of the three fastest growing months for the currency component of M1 since 1947, on a seasonally adjusted basis, even on the heels of significantly above-average growth in July 2001. Much of the July-August surge (over $5 billion above-average) seems to have been in the $100 denomination. Among other explanations, persons aware of any imminent terrorist attacks and concerned about possible asset seizures such as those that arose after the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis and the 1998 embassy bombings could have been trying to liquidate their bank accounts in July and August 2001. The money trail could provide important clues about people aware of, if not responsible for, the attacks. I looked at some internal data bearing on this issue that was available to anyone within the Federal Reserve’s internal computer network; after going back to look at this important data again a week or two later, it was no longer freely available, but password protected.”

Click here to read the full story

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