A post by Edward Harrison on the blog Naked Capitalism argues that, in effect, the government (Federal Reserve) paid J P Morgan Chase to borrow money. Here is how he defends that charge against those who said that technically, the borrowing was not between J P Morgan Chase and the Fed, but between J P. Morgan Chase and its counterparties:
A commenter felt my reference to borrowing from the government was misleading. So, note that technically Repo counterparties are largely banks lending and borrowing excess reserves from one another. So, they are not really borrowing from the government. However, the Fed has set the Fed Funds rate at 0.00-0.25%. It controls the Fed Funds rate to within that range by making repurchase and reverse repo agreements that are collateralized loans to primary dealers of Treasury securities. The supply and demand dynamics in the repo market are largely controlled by the Fed in order to maintain the repo rate at the specified level set by the Fed.To read the entire post, click the link below:
So, while the repo market participants may be borrowing from each other, in essence they are borrowing from the Fed. The repo rate is set and controlled by the Federal Reserve. You could suspend all counterparty transactions in the market and have dealers just repo with the Fed and the net effect would be the same.