Saturday, January 17

Paulson's Capital Cram has no Multiplier

I have to change my anti-media rants because there are some outlets and some writers who refuse to submit to the errors of their business overlords and the mediocrity of their colleagues.  NYT and Newsweek, I'm looking at you.  Great article in the NYT discussing how smaller, healthier banks are hoarding the money they received through the TPILF...I mean TARP.  The author, Mike McIntire, did a very simple thing, he went through the transcripts of as many earnings calls and investment conferences, he was able to get a more candid view of the banks plans for the money than what they are providing through worthless press pronouncements.
“With that capital in hand, not only do we feel comfortable that we can ride out the recession,” he said, “but we also feel that we’ll be in a position to take advantage of opportunities that present themselves once this recession is sorted out.” (Walter M. Pressey, president of Boston Private Wealth Management)

This has some amazing implications.  Before the TARP was approved, I had a discussion with a friend of mine who invests in financial institutions for a big-time money manager.  His argument was that TARP should be approved because it would inject money into the economy, which through the magic of an economist's Multiplier Effect would have an outsized effect on the economy.  Looks like Boston Private is exhibit #1 in how that's not going to happen.  If the banks take the money and sit on it, as it appears they are more than happy to do, then it doesn't have any impact other than making already healthy banks wealthier.
And they just approved part II of this beast?  Not only is our government not responsibly regulating bad industries, they now appear to be magnifying their bad decisions.
I'm pretty sure that putting $750 Billion dollars into the hands of the lower economic stratus of our economy would have a much, much larger multiplier effect than these idiots.

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