Wall Street Aims to Give Itself a Facelift
Trade group mounts effort to counter 'populist overreaction'
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Jun 25, 2009 2:02 PM CDT
A Wall Street street sign hangs near the New York Stock Exchange.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Wall Street’s top trade group is fighting to fix its image amid what it calls a “populist overreaction” to the financial crisis, Bloomberg reports. Top aides to former Treasury secretary Henry Paulson are leading the “city-by-city, grassroots” campaign focused on politicians and the media. The securities industry “must be perceived as part of the solution,” say trade-group documents.

The Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association is keeping Paulson’s aides’ law firm on retainer for some $70,000 a month. A Democratic polling firm and Republican lobbying group are also at work on the effort; the documents suggest getting less-vilified regional securities firms to lobby local lawmakers. “The mess is so big that we all have to work together,” say the minutes of one meeting.