Banks Find New Way to Hold Up Government

From The Wall Street Journal today:

Some bankers say they turned the conversations into complaints about the antibonus crusade consuming Capitol Hill. Some have begun “slow-walking” the information previously sought by Treasury for stress-testing financial institutions, three bankers say, and considered seeking capital from hedge funds and private-equity funds so they could return federal bailout money, thereby escaping federal restrictions.

Ummm . . . if they could get capital from hedge funds and private-equity funds, wouldn’t they have done so already? And they are now resisting the stress tests? Simon is usually more negative about banks’ recent behavior than I am, but I’m catching up.

Distressingly, the article is mainly about how the administration is trying to “fix” this situation by offering greater access to Wall Street leaders. Apparently they actually tried to freeze out the bankers early in the administration, but recently changed course.


Originally published at the Baseline Scenario and reproduced here with the author’s permission.