The Fed’s $7 Trillion Secret Loan Program

The Fed has some ‘splainin’ to do! Continue reading →

The Fed has some ‘splainin’ to do! Continue reading

The Fed’s $7 Trillion Secret Loan Program

The Fed has some ‘splainin’ to do! Continue reading

The Fed’s $7 Trillion Secret Loan Program:


Eliot Spitzer on the aforelinked scandal revealed by Bloomberg:

Imagine you walked into a bank, applied for a personal line of credit, and filled out all the paperwork claiming to have no debts and an income of $200,000 per year. The bank, based on these representations, extended you the line of credit. Then, three years later, after fighting disclosure all the way, you were forced by a court to tell the truth: At the time you made the statements to the bank, you actually were unemployed, you had a $1 million mortgage on your house on which you had failed to make payments for six months, and you hadn’t paid even the minimum on your credit-card bills for three months. Do you think the bank would just say: Never mind, don’t worry about it? Of course not. Whether or not you had paid back the personal line of credit, three FBI agents would be at your door within hours.

Yet this is exactly what the major American banks have done to the public.

Or, as Jon Stewart asked, “How the f*** is it that Martha Stewart went to jail?


(Via Daring Fireball)

Gruber finds the perfect quote.


Doe or Die

An Ultimatum for Carmakers From Obama –

“‘And so today, I am announcing that my administration will offer G.M. and Chrysler a limited period of time to work with creditors, unions and other stakeholders to fundamentally restructure in a way that would justify an investment of additional tax dollars; a period during which they must produce plans that would give the American people confidence in their long-term prospects for success,’ Mr. Obama said.”

(Via NY Times.)

If only private shareholders, particularly institutions, would be so activist, we wouldn’t be in a far better position.

Getting Value for Our Money (or Not)

Bush overpaid banks in bailout, watchdog says – Yahoo! News:

“Overall, the panel and the analysts it retained to conduct the valuation study found that the Treasury used taxpayers’ money to pay $62.5 billion more than the value of assets in the 10 transactions it examined. By extrapolating to the more than 300 institutions that received money, the panel concluded that the government in effect paid $78 billion more than the actual value of the assets at the time.
‘Treasury chose to offer ‘one size fits all’ pricing in order to encourage all institutions to participate, and in so doing disregarded apparent differences in their financial condition,’ the report states. ‘A consequence is that Treasury effectively offered weaker participants greater subsidies than it offered to stronger participants.'”

(Via Yahoo! News.)

This was inevitable. Try to ram a plan that radically changed from day to day to fix a complex problem years in the making is going to make for “large” results. Depending on what Geitner puts out, we’ll see how good or bad in comparison. Personally and I don’t say this often, I’m with Newt Gingrich on this whole thing.

Salary Caps hit Wall Street

Obama’s cap on CEO pay strives to end era of excess |

“‘This is America. We don’t disparage wealth. And we believe that success should be rewarded,’ Obama said. ‘But what gets people upset – and rightfully so – are executives being rewarded for failure. Especially when those rewards are subsidized by US taxpayers.’
The cap on compensation marks a sharp pay cut for executives of some of the largest banks, such as Citigroup and Bank of America.
‘If these executives receive any additional compensation, it will come in the form of stock that can’t be paid up until taxpayers are paid back for their assistance,’ Obama said.”

(Via Christian Science Monitor.)

Contrary to conservative noises about communism, this is quintessentially American capitalist. Now if only corporate boards were actually independent of the executives they are supposed to oversee, we’d have this kind of check and balance all the time.

Op-Ed Columnist – How to Fix a Flat –

Op-Ed Columnist – How to Fix a Flat –

“‘In return for any direct government aid,’ he wrote, ‘the board and the management [of G.M.] should go. Shareholders should lose their paltry remaining equity. And a government-appointed receiver — someone hard-nosed and nonpolitical — should have broad power to revamp G.M. with a viable business plan and return it to a private operation as soon as possible.”

(Via NY Times.)

Amen. Been saying this for all government bailouts. Incompetence should not be rewarded and put in charge of fixing itself.