This week the Federal Reserve went back to the playbook and pulled out a trick that is 50 years old.
They called it Operation Twist. In Federal Reserve terms, the twist is selling off some short term debts it is holding in order to buy long term Treasuries. The goal is to bring down long term interest rates in hopes of spurring home purchasing. A side effect of the twist is there is pressure on banks to make money through lending as the long term debt rate becomes very close to short term rates. This makes it difficult for banks to borrow short term money to finance long term debt at a higher rate. Whether or not Operation Twist will have a positive impact on the economy is yet to be seen.