January 27, 2022

Why is everyone talking about The Fed meeting?!

In Today's Email:

  • 👨‍⚖️ Why is everyone talking about the "Fed Meeting"?

  • 🧲 The Web3 talent magnet

You walk into a room, and these people are staring at you. 

Are you scared? Yes.

Do you wonder why they are all white? Certainly.

Did you break the rules of a nursing home? Perhaps. 

But don’t worry. You’re not in trouble. You just walked into the Federal Open Market Commitee (FOMC) meeting.

If you’re not familiar, the FOMC is a group of people in charge of controlling inflation & deflation. They do this by adjusting interest rates, and deciding what assets to buy with the treasury. 

They meet, then notes from the meeting are released, and then the markets react. 

Look what happened yesterday as soon as the meeting started, I wouldn't let my daughter slide down a slide that slippery.

A bunch of smart people say a bunch of smart things about monetary policy and all that jazz. 

Me? I have no f*cking clue. I had never even heard of the FOMC until this year. 

But with a little googling, here’s what I found: 

The Federal Open Market Committee was made in the early 1900s for situations where people began panicking economically and shit was hitting the fan– we needed a group of people  to make quick monetary decisions to help take the pressure off the economy. 

FOMC is a group of:

  • 7 governors of the Federal Reserve Board: they govern the central bank of the US (known lovingly as "The Fed")

  • 5 (out of 12) of the Federal Reserve Bank Presidents: Regional branches of “The Fed”

These guys come together 8 times a year and figure out 3 main things:

  1. Maximizing employment

  2. Stabilizing prices (inflation/deflation) 

  3. Moderating long term interest rates

And right now, all 3 of those are issues that the Old White Committee FOMC need to tackle. 

Ok history lesson is over, stay with me, this is where it gets good.

Yesterday, Jerome Powell (the Chair of the Fed, known as “J-Money” in my house) released a statement:

  1. Lots of jobs are open–most people can get access to jobs

  2. Inflation is pretty bad (surprise, surprise) 

Nothing is happening to interest rates right now, but they will probably raise interests rates in March and this is one of the main tools they’ll continue to use to tackle price inflation

OK, pretty much what everyone knew already. Nothing unexpected and no specifics. 

Mortgages, credit cards, etc…. will all charge higher interest soon. 

In the meantime, let’s take a moment to appreciate crypto.

You see in crypto, it’s not a group of 12 old white people sitting at a mahogany table deciding the fate of the currency. Instead, we have 5 anonymous accounts in a discord creating currencies from thin air!

Web3 is a talent magnet

Yesterday, I referenced Chris Dixon's theory that “the next big thing will start out looking like a toy”.

Well he has another theory. It’s “what the nerds do on the weekend, we’ll all do in a decade”

For the past 10 years, crypto has just been sucking the best technical talent in the world into it’s vortex. 

Everyday, I see tweets like this:

This is the head of YouTube Gaming announce he’s quitting to join Polygon (MATIC) to lead their gaming and NFT arm. 

Speaking of gaming – look at this chart showing how much gaming (pink) is being used in web3:

According to DappRadar gaming represented 55% of blockchain use in October 2021 and a significant portion of that growth was on Polygon

Why is this important?

  1. Everybody plays games (3 billion+ people) 

  2. Gamers are used to virtual currency and digital items in games 

  3. NFTs will let gamers own those virtual assets and actually earn money playing games

The current game I’m diving into is Defi Kingdoms… but there are a few Polygon games on my list to check out:

Alrighty – that’s all she I wrote today, folks

– Ben “aka Jerome Powell's Long lost nephew” Levy

What'd you think of today's email?

P.S. which one of you milk road readers edited the FOMC Wikipedia Page..? (Sorry vitalik, you got bumped today for this 🤣)