The relationship between the Fed and the primary dealers is governed by the Primary Dealers Act of 1988 and the Fed's operating policy "Administration of Relationships with Primary Dealers." Primary dealers purchase the vast majority of the U.S. Treasury securities (T-bills, T-notes, and T-bonds) sold at auction, and resell them to the public. Their activities extend well beyond the Treasury market. For example, according to the Wall Street Journal Europe (2/9/06 p. 20), all of the top ten dealers in the foreign exchange market are also primary dealers, and between them account for almost 73% of foreign exchange trading volume. Arguably, this group's members are the most influential and powerful non-governmental institutions in global financial markets. Group membership changes slowly, with the current list available from the New York Fed.
Heard the promises of $100 retired military Jeeps and $500 luxury cars confiscated in drug raids? You've likely seen the newspaper ads, flyers and infomercials that were so popular in recent years as part of get-rich-quick schemes, promising to show us how to buy luxury automobiles at a small fraction of their real worth through government auctions.
I wasn't aware that the TSA sold all of the stuff it confiscated! That's cheap goods right there! My mom works for a cruise line, and they don't confiscate stuff, but people do tend to forget all kinds of things they bring on the ship, so every once in a while the company has a big flea market available to employees. I find it funny when my mom comes home with watches and bracelets she wouldn't have otherwise bought.