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Creation of Third Central Bank

30 April, 2015 - 17:08

The main motivation for the third central banking system came from the Panic of 1907, which caused renewed demands for banking and currency reform 1, 23, 4. During the last quarter of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century the United States economy went through a series of financial panics 5. According to many economists, the previous national banking system had two main weaknesses: an inelastic currency and a lack of liquidity 6. In 1908, Congress enacted the Aldrich-Vreeland Act, which provided for an emergency currency and established the National Monetary Commission to study banking and currency reform 7. The National Monetary Commission returned with recommendations which were repeatedly rejected by Congress. A revision crafted during a secret meeting on Jekyll Island by Senator Aldrich and representatives of the nation's top finance and industrial groups later became the basis of the Federal Reserve Act 8, 9. The House voted on December 22, 1913 with 298 yeas to 60 nays and 76 not voting and the Senate voting on December 23, 1913 with 43 yeas to 25 nays and 27 not voting 10. President Woodrow Wilson signed the bill later that day at 6:02pm 11.