15 Stories

Merkel, Sarko Reach Bank Deal

Mum on details, will pitch to EU leaders this month

(Newser) - The leaders of Germany and France, the eurozone's two biggest economies, say they have reached agreement on strengthening Europe's shaky banking sector. German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she and French President Nicolas Sarkozy "are determined to do the necessary to ensure the recapitalization of Europe's banks.... More »

Stocks Hit Sales Record in Recovery Harbinger

(Newser) - May has already been the busiest month ever in new share offers from publicly traded companies, the Wall Street Journal reports. The $54.9 billion in sales this year put the market at a level of activity not seen since 2000. “It’s an indication that the healing process... More »

Time to Stress Out About Stress Tests

Washington is leading us to a second crisis: Krugman

(Newser) - Sure, yesterday's release of the stress tests' results felt pretty anti-climatic. But while bankers might be reassured, Americans have no reason to be, writes Paul Krugman. For the New York Times columnist, the less-than-rigorous stress tests are part and parcel of an Obama administration strategy to "muddle through the... More »

US to Take 36% Stake in Citi

Treasury will take up to 40% of bank in return for boardroom overhaul

(Newser) - Citigroup and the federal government have reached a deal to boost the US stake in the bank to up to 40%, the parties announced this morning. The deal gives shareholders more protection, but in return, agrees to a Treasury Department demand for an overhaul of the embattled bank's board of... More »

RBS Posts $34B Loss, Biggest in UK History, Gets 2nd Bailout

British taxpayer may soon own 95% of bank

(Newser) - The Royal Bank of Scotland today announced an annual loss of $34.3 billion, the largest in British corporate history, and the Treasury said it would inject another $36 billion into the troubled bank. The UK government already owns 70% of RBS, a figure that could now rise to 95%,... More »

Citi Struggles Under Fed Oversight, About to Get More

Tottering bank may give 40% of shares to Washington

(Newser) - Citigroup is in talks with Washington about a restructured deal that would see the US convert its 7.8% stake of preferred shares into up to 40% of common stock. The deal would provide Citi with desperately needed capital, but would place the bank under further control of the federal... More »

Cramer Changes Course: Have Faith in Geithner

It's cheaper than nationalization, and gets banks moving again

(Newser) - Geithner’s got it, James Cramer writes in New York—much to his own surprise. Cramer notes that he's railed against the Treasury chief for months, but he's now come around just as others have abandoned him. “The press, the pols, the Wall Streeters—they are all dumping their... More »

No Silver Bullet for Crises Like These: Pearlstein

Complex financial system requires complicated fixes ... and lots of patience

(Newser) - With various factions blaming a single factor—and pushing a single solution—for the financial crisis, Steven Pearlstein of the Washington Post cautions that there won’t be a silver bullet. Reducing foreclosures, removing toxic assets, and nationalizing banks will all come into play; meantime, we must “resist the... More »

BofA Takes Another $20B Bailout on $10B Merrill Loss

Crippled by unforeseen losses and falling stock price, B of A puts its hand out. Again.

(Newser) - Bank of America, sucker-punched by unforeseen losses from its takeover of Merrill Lynch, received another injection of $20 billion from the Treasury, the Wall Street Journal reports, bringing the total cost of BofA’s bailout to $45 billion. BofA’s shares shed 40% of their value in the past seven... More »

Report Rips TARP Strategy (or Lack Thereof)

Failure to track funds or evaluate effectiveness troubles panel

(Newser) - So much for transparency. A blistering draft report being issued by a congressional oversight panel today says Treasury has failed to reveal its strategy for stabilizing the financial system and failed to answer questions asked by the watchdog group, the Wall Street Journal reports. But worse still, it’s done... More »

Ireland Buys 75% of Troubled Lender in Banks Bailout

Anglo Irish goes into taxpayers' hands after scandal

(Newser) - Ireland became the latest nation to partially nationalize struggling banks last night, buying 75% of the deeply troubled Anglo Irish Bank and bailing out others, reports the Financial Times. The bank, whose shares had already dropped 95% from bad mortgage debts, suffered a further blow last week when its CEO ... More »

Treasury Hopes Bailout Will Spur Bank Mergers

Paulson seeks to reshape banking with new capital

(Newser) - Treasury's $250 billion cash infusion into financial institutions is meant to increase liquidity and get banks to start lending to each other again, but it might have another effect: accelerating mergers. The New York Times reports that the government's unprecedented recapitalization is also meant to give bigger banks the... More »

How Brown Became a Superhero

Glum British PM now seems more 'Flash Gordon'

(Newser) - Unpopular at home and nearly invisible on the world stage, Gordon Brown endured a tough ride during his first year in power. But the global financial crisis has transformed the British prime minister, who now finds himself in the unlikely position of international superstar. As Europe, Australia, Hong Kong, and... More »

A $250B Offer They Couldn't Refuse

In brief meeting, Paulson gave banks a 'take it or take it' deal

(Newser) - When the CEOs of America's 9 largest banks arrived at the Treasury at 3pm Monday afternoon, they each received a draft one-page statement promising to sell shares to the government. By 6:30 they'd all signed them. The New York Times reconstructs the meeting, during which Henry Paulson wore down... More »

Academics Laud Bank Plan

Econ professors say capital infusion best option

(Newser) - The Treasury gets gold stars for finally recapitalizing collapsing banks, with the Wall Street Journal reporting on reactions from economics professors:
  • Barry Eichengreen, UC Berkeley: "I would give it an A- for quality but lower the final grade to a C for lateness."
  • Kenneth Rogoff, Harvard: "Thank
... More »

15 Stories