As you may have heard, the Federal Reserve is now releasing transcripts of its FOMC meetings, in an effort to be open and honest with the public about what it is they do all day. Out this morning are the minutes from 2006’s get-togethers and one thing that stands out is how much fun these guys are having without us! In fact, they spent most of 2006 in stitches, as evidenced by the amount of material The Economist was able to compile under “comments from the Federal Open Market Committee meetings which resulted in laughter.” They’ve got their beard jokes (Mr. Poole: “Okay. Mr. Chairman, it is a great delight to see a 200 percent increase in the number of beards around this table. [Laughter]“), their penis innuendos (Chairman Bernanke: “Still pretty large. [Laughter]“), and their deep nerd humor (“Again, within the normal errors of Okun’s law—despite its name “law,” it’s a pretty loose empirical relationship [laughter]“). But the biggest laugh riot which still holds up today and unquestionably has Alan Greenspan pissing his pants in laughter as he reads it at home?

From the meeting of January 31, 2006: “Needless to say, it’s fitting for Chairman Greenspan to leave office with the economy in such solid shape. And if I might torture a simile, I would say, Mr. Chairman, that the situation you’re handing off to your successor is a lot like a tennis racquet with a gigantic sweet spot. [Laughter]“

Ooo, maybe not so much! Next up, the dialogue between Greenspan and Bernanke circa May 2004 in which Benji asks the Maestro, “Hey, Boss, there’s this 2,600sf house downtown selling for $839k. Sweet deal, but it’s a bit of a stretch, you think I should hold off?” and Big Al tells him to go for it and be sure to get an adjustable rate mortgage that resets after three years.

A selection of comments from Federal Open Market Committee meetings which resulted in laughter [The Economist/Free Exchange]

61 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (61)

  1. Posted by Guest | January 12, 2012 at 2:24 PM

    We have that tradition at BAC too!

    – K. Lewis

  2. Posted by Guestest | January 12, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    My prank is bigger than yours.

  3. Posted by Ang Moz | January 12, 2012 at 2:50 PM

    “Hey, Boss, there’s this 2,600sf house downtown selling for $839k. Sweet deal, but it’s a bit of a stretch, you think I should hold off?” and Big Al tells him to go for it and be sure to get an adjustable rate mortgage that resets after three year.

    LOL

  4. Posted by Pranky Pants | January 12, 2012 at 3:02 PM

    My prank could buy your entire prank.

  5. Posted by Corporate Waste | January 12, 2012 at 3:12 PM

    Same here!

    -Chucky Prince of Darkness

  6. Posted by I Chortled | January 12, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    "like a tennis racquet that anally rapes you for an untold number of years"

  7. Posted by early_hominid | January 12, 2012 at 3:47 PM

    After Greenspan’s departure from the Fed, the spirit of good humor at FOMC meetings was maintained, albeit with a darker hue:

    – Fucking fine hurricane of piss Greenspan left us, isn’t it?
    – We should put together a hobo army, burn his motherfucking house down, and string him up from a lamppost by his fucking wig.
    – Can’t we just kill him, shoot him?
    – Or fire him at a wall from a cannon from like 3 feet away?
    – Or force feed him industrial lye and tainted garlic in a bowl of chili?
    – What about the old red-hot poker up the ass, Edward II-style?
    – Or just anally rape him with a horseradish.
    – I’d like to nail him to a tree through the head and watch lice slowly crawl over his body eating off the flesh in a slow and painful death . . .
    (laughter)

    ht: “Thick of It”

  8. Posted by desksoda | January 12, 2012 at 3:59 PM

    cool story bro.

  9. Posted by guest | January 12, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    You realize this was a line from the above post, and not "Ang Moz" trying to make his own joke right? Also, kill yourself.

  10. Posted by Kegels123 | January 12, 2012 at 4:13 PM

    "And if I might torture a simile, I would say, Mr. Chairman, that the situation you’re handing off to your successor is a lot like a tennis racquet with a gigantic sweet spot.." …..that's what I kept telling everyone….

    -Jeff Skilling

  11. Posted by Guest | January 12, 2012 at 4:21 PM

    I laughed but that got progressively darker/more sadistic with each turn.

  12. Posted by Guest | January 12, 2012 at 4:23 PM

    Chairman Bernanke: "I said 'Do you love me?' And she said, 'No, but that's a really great ski mask!'" [Laughter]

  13. Posted by Guest | January 12, 2012 at 5:05 PM

    Bess, surprised that you didn't include this one from Timmay to Greenspan at the same meeting –

    "VICE CHAIRMAN GEITHNER: I’d like the record to show that I think you’re pretty terrific, too. [Laughter] And thinking in terms of probabilities, I think the risk that we decide in the future that you’re even better than we think is higher than the alternative. [Laughter]"

    Please let us know his stock picks so we can short them.

  14. Posted by barry badrinath | January 12, 2012 at 5:09 PM

    been shitting pancakes ever since

  15. Posted by BessLevin | January 12, 2012 at 5:11 PM

    I didn't find it nearly as funny as the above.

  16. Posted by Guest | January 13, 2012 at 12:08 PM

    You get sarcasm….right…?

  17. Posted by Guest | January 13, 2012 at 12:13 PM

    Kill yourself…

  18. Posted by vice chairman | January 14, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    [Laughter]

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