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The Federal Reserve and retail payments: a historical review

Ashish Lall (National University of Singapore, Singapore, Singapore)

Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance

ISSN: 1358-1988

Article publication date: 12 February 2018

232

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a comprehensive historical review of the role of the Federal Reserve in retail payments in the USA.

Design/methodology/approach

It reviews the literature on the role of the Federal Reserve and assessments of its involvement.

Findings

In addition to its oversight and operational role, the Federal Reserve has conducted R&D and facilitated technology adoption. It has provided effective competition to the private sector without subsidies.

Research limitations/implications

The Federal Reserve has served the public interest and private networks have benefited from the “visible hand” of government.

Practical implications

Migration to electronic payments will likely change its role from an operator to setting standards for safety and security.

Originality/value

The historical review provides context against which the future strategy of the Federal Reserve may be assessed.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The author thanks the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore for a research grant and Dr Lawrence Schembri and two anonymous reviewers for helpful comments and suggestions.

Citation

Lall, A. (2018), "The Federal Reserve and retail payments: a historical review", Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, Vol. 26 No. 1, pp. 58-71. https://doi.org/10.1108/JFRC-09-2016-0077

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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