M1 Money Supply Components

Here’s a listing of M1 parts.

  1. M1 consists of foreign money exterior the U.S. Treasury, Federal Reserve Banks, and the vaults of depository establishments; plus
  2. Demand deposits at industrial banks (excluding these quantities held by depository establishments, the U.S. authorities, and international banks and official establishments) much less money gadgets in the technique of assortment and Federal Reserve float; plus
  3. Other checkable deposits (OCDs), consisting of negotiable order of withdrawal, or NOW, and computerized switch service, or ATS, accounts at depository establishments, credit score union share draft accounts, and demand deposits at thrift establishments.

The St. Louis Fed M1 Description additionally consists of Traveler’s checks, however the quantity is tiny. The Traveler’s Check collection was discontinued in 2018 with the final worth at a mere $1.7 billion.

The St. Louis Fed description incorporates this lie: “M1 consists of funds which might be readily accessible for spending.”

Derived Number

The St. Louis Fed doesn’t have information on #2 precisely as acknowledged above. It does have OCD and Currency and M1. 

I derived Demand Deposits by subtracting Currency and OCDs from M1.

The bounce in foreign money is probably going an artifact of Covid. Some companies need the actual change or do not take it in any respect. People pile up cash and {dollars} in their pockets or at house. 

Important Background

I’ll sort out the remainder of the present spike momentarily, however the background is necessary too.

What Happened in 1994? 

Note that M1 declined between December 1994 and September 2001.

M1 was $1.153 trillion in September of 1994. It didn’t exceed that quantity till it hit $1.208 trillion in September of 2001. 

I mentioned this on November 29,2007 in Where’s the Cash?

The reply is Sweeps.

What are Sweeps?

Sweeps are automated packages that “sweep” funds from one kind of account into one other kind of account mechanically. In this case we’re speaking about packages that enable banks to “sweep” funds from checking accounts to different sorts of accounts akin to financial savings accounts that enable cash to be lent out. Sweeps have been initiated by Greenspan in 1994. 

Money that’s alleged to be in your checking account is not actually there in any respect. It is swept into financial savings accounts nightly in order that it may be lent out. 

There are not any reserves on financial savings accounts. Coupled with sweeps, that meant there actually no reserves in any respect. 

That’s what impressed my 2009 submit Fictional Reserve Lending and the Myth of Excess Reserves. 

Fictional Reserve Lending 

Bank Reserves are Totally Fiction

I did a observe up submit on March 27, 2020 in Fictional Reserve Lending Is the New Official Policy.

Official Announcement

With little fanfare or media protection, the Fed made this Announcement on Reserves. 

“As announced on March 15, 2020, the Board reduced reserve requirement ratios to zero percent effective March 26, 2020. This action eliminated reserve requirements for all depository institutions.” 

Amusingly, just a few days in the past one more article appeared explaining how the Money Multiplier works. The instance goes like this: Someone deposits $10,000 and a financial institution lends out $9,000 after which the $9,000 will get redeposited and 90% of the will get lent out and so an and so forth. 

That is just not remotely near how loans get made. Deposits and reserves by no means performed into lending selections. 

What’s Changed Regarding Lending? 

Essentially, nothing.

The announcement simply formally admitted the denominator on reserves for lending is zero.

With that clarification of what occurred to M1 after 1994, let’s flip the dialogue to what’s occurring now. 

The Wrong Answer

There are some fallacious solutions on the market together with some wild theories about Biden in this Seeking Alpha Post that additionally discusses how money “circulates”. Well, no it does not.

Think Fed’s Balance Sheet

Fed's Balance Sheet 2020-09-24

The spike in M1 appears surprisingly just like the Fed’s stability sheet. 

It’s from my September 25, 2020 submit The Fed Now Owns Over $2 Trillion in Mortgages, What Else?

Let’s take a present take a look at M1 vs Fed Assets.

M1 Components vs Fed’s Balance Sheet

M1 Components vs Fed's Balance Sheet

Let’s hone in on that with some extra math to see what seems to be occurring. 

M1, FTHO, Currency+OCD+FTHO, Currency+FTHO

M1, FTHO, Currency 2021-01

Balance Sheet Explanation of M1

Fed Treasuries Held Outright (FTHO) are a part of the Fed’s stability sheet. 

OCD is different checkable deposits. Currency is the M1 part of foreign money.

Currency plus FTHO is an effective estimate of M1. I shouldn’t have a deal with but on the distinction.

As famous above, Required Reserves are $0.00 which as soon as and for all kills the Money Multiplier Redeposit Theory of credit score. 

The Fed discontinued reporting on Excess Reserves however it nonetheless pays Interest on Excess Reserves, at the moment 0.10%, no less than as famous on Fred.


The Fed’s stability sheet techniques are the key driver of M1, not folks shifting cash into or out of checking accounts, not Biden, not the wealthy leaping ship, not actual property taxes nor any of the different claims tossed round.


I simply discovered a New York Fed article that explains why QE drives up M1: What’s Driving Up Money Growth?

M1 development is extremely positively correlated with the development in reserves generated by Fed asset purchases. The purpose for that is easy: Reserves held with the central financial institution are property for banks. As the Fed expands reserves, banks should both promote different property (protecting the general degree of property unchanged), problem extra liabilities or fairness (increasing the degree of property), or some mixture of the two. In truth, banks didn’t scale back their general holdings of different property as reserves elevated. Instead, banks primarily funded these new property by issuing extra liabilities, together with deposits. Over the similar interval, rates of interest have been low, decreasing the incentive for households to put their funds in interest-earning financial savings accounts slightly than checking accounts. Correspondingly, a lot of this improve in financial institution liabilities has been in the type of checkable deposits. This helps clarify why M1 has grown greater than M2.