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Bair growls at Wall Street bailouts

Thursday, September 27, 2012 - 02:10

Sept 27 - Former FDIC head Sheila Bair's new book ''Bull by the Horns: Fighting to Save Main Street from Wall Street and Wall Street from Itself'' is blunt in its criticism of the top figures involved in the 2008 financial crisis. Bobbi Rebell reports.

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Wall Street's big banks like Citigroup, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, and President Obama- all in the firing line in former Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, or FDIC head Sheila Bair's new book; "Bull by the Horns: Fighting to Save Main Street from Wall Street and Wall Street from Itself". As one of the top bank regulators at the center of the 2008 financial crisis, she butted heads with Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. She refers to him as "bailouter in chief". SOUNDBITE: SHEILA BAIR, FORMER FDIC CHAIRWOMAN (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The philosophical disagreements I had with Tim was that I didn't identify the interests of the banks with the interests of the broader public. Where I think the whole theory of the big bank bailouts was if you get them profitable again, everybody else is going to benefit. And I just don't think that's really the way it worked out. When it comes to Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit- she doesn't mince words: SOUNDBITE: SHEILA BAIR, FORMER FDIC CHAIRWOMAN (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Vikram has said they want to get back to basics and be a basic bank and he's not a basic banker, he's a former hedge fund manager and he had a mixed success in that regard. So I'm sure he is a nice person and personable and all of that but in terms of providing strong leadership and strategic direction and you know having the force to build a franchise based on good basic banking I look at his resume and I just don't see a fit there." And she doesn't like the way things have worked out with the current administration. SOUNDBITE: SHEILA BAIR, FORMER FDIC CHAIRWOMAN (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Mr. Obama has been very supportive of Dodd-Frank which I think is great but if you look at how the implementation has gone with folks that he has appointed to these jobs I think implementation could be more robust. I mean the regulators at the end of the day are just too timid and they need to strong support from their president and they need support from congress instead congress too often tries to intimidate the regulators into backing down as opposed to supporting them for the tough decisions they need to make." Bair adds that she thinks the U.S. needs to consolidate its bank regulators- limiting it to the Fed and the FDIC. Bobbi Rebell, Reuters.

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Bair growls at Wall Street bailouts

Thursday, September 27, 2012 - 02:10