Common wisdom says that JPMorgan Chase has had a relatively “good” financial crisis. Did it lose money? Yes, lots and lots. Did it get bailed out? Yes, to the tune of $25 billion. (Although some say that they had no choice in the matter and were just taking one for the team.) But as the dust settled from the worst financial crisis in modern history two things became clear:
- JPMorgan was in much better shape than its nearest competitors, Citigroup and Bank of America.
- Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs, would play the biggest bad guy in this drama. Jamie Dimon, on the other hand, was the man. (Or the least-hated banker, as the New York Times put it.)
When it comes to TARP the Government Accountability Office is like that annoying acquaintance that everyone tries to ditch; it just won’t shut up. You see, the 2008 legislation that authorized TARP also authorized the GAO to write a progress report on the bailout program every two months. It doesn’t always make for pleasant reading. Continue Reading
Last week I showed you exactly how TARP’s Special Master for Compensation decided to continue paying millions in compensation to the chiefs of bailed out companies. (Short answer: Tim Geithner talked a good game about being tough on pay but then flip-flopped at the first opportunity.)
But here’s the other interesting thing about this saga: AIG’s not so sure that we’ll ever get our $51 billion back. Continue Reading
Here were the Finance Addict’s top stories this week. Plus, check out our GIF of the Week after the jump!
- Davos shocked to hear that poor people exist. When you start hearing the language of Huxley and Orwell on the slopes of the Swiss Alps, then you know that something has shifted.
- Trust in business and politics reaches critical point. We don’t really trust corporations or government. Can we reverse this? And if not, then what?
- Germany seeks permission to drown. Germany and France want to ignore a key lesson from the crisis and play fast and loose with Basel III.
- More tangled tales from TARP. As the Special “Pay Master” for TARP, is Ken Feinberg a legal laureate gone rogue? Or is he being railroaded?
- A White House nudge towards strategic default? A 2008 memo to President-Elect Barack Obama contains a counterintuitive endorsement for strategic default.
- Trusted advice? Hardly. Dale Westhoff is the Global Head of Structured Product Research at Credit Suisse and apparently the firm’s chief propagandist.
- Saying “No” to the yes-men on fiscal stimulus. Does recent research from Virginia Tech shed light on why the fiscal stimulus debate went wrong? Continue Reading