Many, many people are talking about the Fed Funds Rate, but I have a feeling most don’t even know that the rate is not set by Bernanke or the FOMC… they set a “target” rate for the Fed’s open market activities.

You can see here that the number in practice does deviate from the target slightly on a day-to-day basis. Even though the target rate is 5.25% there are several days where the average rate was 5.31% or even 5.17%.

There’s nothing sinister or conspiratorial here, it’s just the fact that the Fed is in less control than everyone thinks. They are subject to some variance just like the rest of the markets…

To quote “The Federal Reserve Bank is a private company, authorized in 1913 by a Congressional Act called the Federal Reserve Act of 1913. In a very real sense, it outsourced the control of U.S. money and banking to bankers themselves.”