Fed's Ferguson-monetary policy unhurt by mergers

A global wave of financial mergers and acquisitions in the 1990s, totaling 7,500 deals valued at about $1.6 trillion, has not affected central banks' ability to set interest rates, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Roger Ferguson said Mar 9, 2001.

"Consolidation could, at least in theory, affect the way changes in monetary policy are transmitted to the real economy," Ferguson said in prepared remarks to be delivered to a banking conference in Rome, Italy.

"For example, consolidation could potential

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