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Fed balance sheet grows in latest weekUS-USA-FED-DISCOUNT:Fed balance sheet grows in latest week
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Federal Reserve's balance sheet grew in the latest week with a jump in the holdings of agency mortgage-backed securities, Fed data released on Thursday showed.
The Fed's balance sheet - a broad gauge of its lending to the financial system - stood at $2.829 trillion on October 17, up from $2.794 trillion on October 10.
The Fed's ownership of mortgage bonds guaranteed by Fannie Mae <FNMA.OB>, Freddie Mac <FMCC.OB> and the Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae) totaled $862.30 billion, up from $835.01 billion the previous week.
Under the Fed's latest stimulus program, announced last month and dubbed QE3, the central bank has pledged to buy $40 billion per month of agency mortgage-backed securities.
The Fed's holdings of Treasuries totaled $1.659 trillion as of Wednesday versus $1.654 trillion the previous week.
The Fed's holdings of debt issued by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Federal Home Loan Bank system totaled $82.75 billion, which was unchanged on the week.
The Fed's overnight direct loans to credit-worthy banks via its discount window averaged $12 million a day during the week compared with a $17 million a day average rate the prior week.
(Reporting by Chris Reese; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)
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