When you can print money, it’s not hard to make it. The Federal Reserve announced this year that it had a net income of $91 billion and would remit $88.9 billion of that to the federal government; the rest goes toward the Fed’s budget. The Fed makes money from interest payments from the hoard of Treasury and mortgage-backed debt it owns, and as its balance sheet has tripled in size since August 2008, so have its profits. It handed over $75.4 billion in 2011 and $79.3 billion in 2010. In more normal years, like 2003, 2004, and 2005, its payments to the Treasury averaged $20.5 billion.