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In this account of his stranger-than-fiction baptism into the corrupted ways of Washington, Neil Barofsky offers an irrefutable indictment, from an insider of the Bush and Obama administrations, of the mishandling of the $700 billion TARP bailout fund. In behind-the-scenes detail, he reveals proof of the extreme degree to which our government officials bent over backward to serve the interests of Wall Street firms at the expense of the broader public–and at the expense of effective financial reform. During the height of the financial crisis in 2008, Barofsky gave up his job as a prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s office in New York City, where he had convicted drug kingpins, Wall Street executives, and perpetrators of mortgage fraud, to become the special inspector general in charge of oversight of the spending of the bailout money. From his first day on the job, his efforts to protect against fraud and to hold the big banks accountable for how they spent taxpayer money were met with outright hostility from the Treasury officials in charge of the bailouts. Barofsky discloses how, in serving the interests of the banks, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and his team worked with Wall Street executives to design programs that would funnel vast amounts of taxpayer money to their firms and would have allowed them to game the markets and make huge profits with almost no risk and no accountability, while repeatedly fighting Barofsky’s efforts to put the necessary fraud protections in place. His investigations also uncovered abject mismanagement of the bailout of insurance giant AIG and Geithner’s decision to allow the payment of millions of dollars in bonuses–including $7, 700 to a kitchen worker and $7,000 to a mail room assistant–and that the Obama administration’s “TARP czar” lobbied for the executives to retain their high pay. Providing details about how, meanwhile, the interests of homeowners and the broader public were betrayed, Barofsky recounts how Geithner and his team steadfastly failed to fix glaring flaws in the Obama administration’s homeowner relief program pointed out by Barofsky and other bailout watchdogs, rejecting anti-fraud measures, which unleashed a wave of abuses by mortgage providers against homeowners, even causing some who would not have lost their homes otherwise to go into foreclosure.
During the high interest times in the 1970’s and 1980’s, the banks and the savings and loan associations were under heavy financial pressure. Hundreds of them failed. The Home Loan Bank Board permitted the savings and loan associations to treat goodwill as capital, thereby allowing them to remain open and to build up enormous losses that eventually cost the taxpayers billions of dollars. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation took a different approach. It closed the banks or sold them, all at no cost to the taxpayers. Bailout is the engrossing story of how the FDIC handled four of these failures. Book jacket.
The financial crisis that began in 2007 has brought to the fore the issues of excesses in lending, leverage, and risk-taking as some of the fundamental causes of this crisis. At the same time, in dealing with the financial crisis there have been large scale interventions by governments, often referred to as bailouts of the lenders. This paper presents a framework where rational economic agents engage in ex ante excessive lending, borrowing, and risk-taking if creditors assign a positive probability to being bailed out. The paper also offers some thoughts on policy implications. It argues that it would be most productive for the long run if lending institutions were not bailed out. If the continuing existence of an institution was deemed essential, assistance should take the form of capital injections that dilute the equity of existing owners.
This book introduces and analyzes a new and more predictable bankruptcy process designed specifically for large financial institutions—Chapter 14—to achieve greater financial stability and reduce the likelihood of bailouts. The contributors identify and compare the major differences in the Dodd-Frank Title II and the proposed new procedures and outline the reasons why Chapter 14 would be more effective in preventing both financial crises and bailouts.
An engaging look at what led to the financial turmoil we now find ourselves in
Bailout Nation offers one of the clearest looks at the financial lenders, regulators, and politicians responsible for the financial crisis of 2008. Written by Barry Ritholtz, one of today’s most popular economic bloggers and a well-established industry pundit, this book skillfully explores how the United States evolved from a rugged independent nation to a soft Bailout Nation-where financial firms are allowed to self-regulate in good times, but are bailed out by taxpayers in bad times.
Entertaining and informative, this book clearly shows you how years of trying to control the economy with easy money has finally caught up with the federal government and how its practice of repeatedly rescuing Wall Street has come back to bite them.
The definitive book on the financial crisis of 2008
Names the culprits responsible for this tragedy-from financial regulators to politicians
Shows how each bailout throughout modern history has impacted what happened in the future
Examines why the consumer/taxpayer is left suffering in an economy of bubbles, bailouts, and possible inflation
Ritholtz operates a hugely popular blog, www.ritholtz.com/blog
Scathing, but fair, Bailout Nation is a voice of reason in these uncertain economic times.
In Bailout, John Waggoner answers the essential questions surrounding recent market catastrophes—from the failure of Bear Stearns to the credit crisis—and reveals how you can protect your portfolio during these turbulent times. Waggoner offers a wide range of strategies to help your portfolio weather this storm, including rebalancing and using foreign currencies, and discusses how Treasury bonds, gold, commodities, and real estate can solidify your financial standing. With the expert advice found here, you’ll quickly discover what it takes to achieve safety and success in today’s volatile market.
Alaska seems to have a monopoly of captivating and enthralling women authors. First, there was Sarah Palin. Now comes Ellen G. Nicdao. But the contrast between the two Alaskan women authors could not be more stark than night and day. Whereas Palin wants tax cuts for the rich, Nicdao wants tax cuts for lower-income Americans. Palin wants the defi cit reduced by limiting government spending. Nicdao wants to turn the defi cit into a surplus by more government spending for projects that will eliminate foreclosures and create millions of jobs. Both women wear glasses. But through Palin’s glasses she sees prosperity in America in the hands of the wealthy. Nicdao sees it in the rough, weathered hands of the American laborer. While Palin and her Tea Party talk about giving back Americans their freedom, Nicdao, an Independent, wants freedom from the oppression of foreclosures and joblessness for tens of millions of Americans. A hockey mom, Sarah Palin started honing her skills at PTA meetings. Ellen G. Nicdao built on her Fulbright Hayes graduate studies in economics from the University of Michigan, into a multi-faceted corporate executive career with major U.S. and international companies, culminating in the founding of her own company. In the end, the two Alaskan women engage the reader with riveting books albeit from vastly different perspectives. Palin’s “Going Rogue” is a fascinating read on how to rise to a vice-presidential slot from the humble beginnings of a hockey mom. Nicdao’s “Bailout Shame,” on the other hand, tricks us into entering the complex world of Wall Street by making it appear through the large print of her book that we are reading a children’s book where everything is so easy to understand multipliers, collateralized debt obligations, credit default swaps and all. But her razorsharp solutions to America’s foreclosures and jobs crises are steeped in fl awless economic theory duly tempered by the realities of Main Street. She envisions the U.S. Treasury earning billions if not trillions of dollars of profi ts as it ends the foreclosures crisis once and for all. The labor-intensive jobs she wants created will employ the tens of millions of unemployed Americans.
With every highly visible and controversial stimulus plan or bailout to rescue corporate America, many individuals have begun to ask, "Hey, where’s my bailout?" Since nobody but you is going to bail you out, authors and entrepreneurs Todd Josko and Debbie Lundberg offer five easy steps to create your own bailout plan for any area of your life – all in only 60 days. An insightful and entertaining read filled with practicality and usefulness, Hey, Where’s My Bailout? offers the tools you’ll want to use to begin living the life you truly deserve.
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