The Federal Reserve Bank of New York takes a step forward for diversity and inclusion

The New York Fed takes a step forward for diversity and inclusion

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York | Buck Ennis

Wall Street’s average bonus hit a record high of $258,000 last year, but what’s even more amazing is how little the demographics of this high-paying workforce have changed over the years. weather. The securities industry was 74% white in 2008 and 70% in 2018, according to the most recent data from the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Blacks and Hispanics fell to 13% of workers from 14% a decade earlier. In 2018, women held 20% of leadership positions, up from 19% previously.

You could call the move towards greater diversity and inclusion glacial, except that glaciers are moving much faster, thanks to global warming.

And on that note, I’m happy to report that real progress has been made in the past week. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has designated a minority-owned brokerage firm as one of its primary brokers.

Primary traders are the 25 firms that bid at Treasury bond auctions and help set interest rates by transacting with the Fed’s trading desk in its Maiden Lane stronghold. (It really is a fortress because the building rests on a huge vault of gold.) Fed transactions started out restricted to New York businesses before the Japanese got a seat at the table in 1986, according to archives. The European institutions were invited soon after and later the Canadians. In the 1980s, there were as many as 46 primary traders before the velvet rope was lifted. In 2016, the Fed said it wanted to expand the reseller pool. More was needed to make all debt markets float.

The new Fed broker is ASL Capital Markets of Stamford, Connecticut. Regulatory filings show it has $160 million in capital, a minnow to JPMorgan’s $300 billion. The company is certified as a minority-owned business by the Greater New England Minority Supplier Development Council and owned by Aladin Secured Lending, whose chairman is Aminkhan Aladin, according to LinkedIn. ASL declined to comment.

Being a primary dealer means ASL is a counterparty to the Fed. It’s an interesting party to attend when the central bank tries to shrink its $9 trillion balance sheet by $95 billion a month without causing chaos. The market intelligence that ASL will glean from its new access will be greatly appreciated by customers.

Now that the New York Fed has invited a minority-owned broker, why not give some women-owned businesses a seat at the table? Because that $9 trillion balance sheet isn’t going to sell itself.

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