Printing press remains profitable, especially to the people who own it.
The only thing that I can gain from this article is that when Bernanke entered the market for Treasury and Agency junk, he brought with him so many newly-printed dollars that even investments as crappy as T-bonds went up in nominal value, so he can now pat himself on the shoulder and spin stories, telling us how me made money on that trade. To me it looks like if there was any money made, the word "made" should be taken literally. Another fly in the ointment: there is a general rule that you don't boast about a trade until you close it. Has Bernanke tried to sell any of those securities that show such outstanding unrealized gains? A little voice is telling me that there won't be many buyers. Unless, of course, Bernanke steps in to buy them from himself. http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Fed-posts-record-profit-of-apf-231123775.html?x=0
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Federal Reserve generated record profits last year, reflecting money made off its extraordinary efforts to rescue the country from the worst economic and financial crisis since the 1930s.
The central bank announced Tuesday it logged a record windfall of $52.1 billion. Of that total, a record of $46.1 billion gets turned over to the Treasury Department....
The bigger profit reported by the Fed came from $46.1 billion in earnings from the securities it held last year.
Such income went up as the Fed's holdings of securities mushroomed.
The Fed launched several securities-buying programs last year to help revive the economy. Its goal is to drive down rates on mortgages and other consumer debt.
Under one program that ended last year, the Fed snapped up $300 billion worth of government debt. Under another program, the Fed is on track to buy $1.25 trillion in mortgage securities from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and an additional $175 billion in debt issued by the mortgage giants. Those programs have boosted the value of securities held by the Fed."