We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is the FOMC?

Mary McMahon
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is a branch of the Federal Reserve Bank in the United States. The FOMC is the policy making arm of the Federal Reserve, and has eight meetings a year to assess the current market and make decisions which are intended to keep it running smoothly. While the decisions that the FOMC makes only directly impact funds held by the Federal Reserve Bank, they have a ripple effect on the market in general, and the results of FOMC meetings are eagerly awaited by the finance industry.

The FOMC has 12 members. Seven of the members come from the Federal Reserve Bank Board, and are appointed by the president of the United States. 12 reserve banks from around the nation are represented at FOMC meetings: the president of the New York Reserve Bank has a permanent seat on the committee with full voting rights, and the remaining four seats are filled on a rotating basis with presidents of the various reserve banks. Each president serves with voting rights for one year before stepping down to allow another president to take his or her place, ensuring even representation.

At FOMC meetings, the members of the committee give presentations about the current market, along with projections. The representative from San Francisco, for example, might discuss the current health of the technology industry, which the Chicago representative might give a report about the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The voting members consider the information offered about the market while they reach a decision on where federal interest rates should be set, and whether securities should be bought or sold to increase or decrease the supply of available currency.

The goal of the FOMC is to maintain a stable and healthy economy with high employment rates and reasonable rates of credit. If inflation is running rampant, the FOMC may choose to restrict available credit to reduce it, or it may choose to slash interest rates and make more credit available to stimulate a sluggish economy. The voting members carefully weigh the available information and forecasts when they vote behind closed doors, and then the results are released to the public, usually triggering a radical response on the open market.

In addition to eight regularly scheduled meetings, the FOMC can also meet on short notice in a case of national emergency or urgent need. The committee is capable of making rapid decisions to ward off potential economic instability, and the Federal Reserve Bank, along with the nation, relies upon the FOMC to make sound choices for the American economy.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a WiseGeek researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.