The Federal Reserve's inspector general said the central bank's Board should beef up its safeguards for releasing market-sensitive economic data and policy statements, highlighting risks of its practice of giving journalists some information under embargo.
In a report released Wednesday, the IG said Board officials should "more strictly adhere" to controls already established and put in place new measures to "more effectively safeguard embargoed economic information."
The IG took the unusual step of issuing an "early alert memorandum" in July because of issues "that warranted the Board's immediate attention."
The IG audit follows a 2013 report which criticized Board staff for weak controls after a member of the Fed's Congressional Liaison Office accidentally e-mailed Federal Open Market Committee meeting minutes to a contact list that included Wall Street banks, trade groups and congressional staff hours before public release.
In July, the Fed accidentally released staff projections for interest rates and the economy on a public website. The projections are normally released with a five-year lag.