Supreme Court rejects appeal in case involving business media


The Federal Reserve must disclose details of emergency loans it made to banks in 2008 as the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal Monday by the banking industry to keep the records private after a Bloomberg News reporter requested them using the Freedom of Information Act.

Greg Stohr and Bob Ivry of Bloomberg write, “Under the trial judge’s order, the Fed must reveal 231 pages of documents related to borrowers in April and May 2008, along with loan amounts. News Corp’s Fox News is pressing a bid for 6,186 pages of similar information on loans made from August 2007 to November 2008.

“The records were originally requested under FOIA, which allows citizens access to government papers, by the late Bloomberg News reporter Mark Pittman.

“As a financial crisis developed in 2007, ‘The Federal Reserve forgot that it is the central bank for the people of the United States and not a private academy where decisions of great importance may be withheld from public scrutiny,” said Matthew Winkler, editor in chief of Bloomberg News. ‘The Fed must be accountable to Congress, especially in disclosing what it does with the people’s money.’

“The Clearing House Association contended that Bloomberg was seeking an unprecedented disclosure that might dissuade banks from accepting emergency loans in the future.”

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