Items of Interest:
Obama slams Wall Street on bonuses — President calls the $18.4 billion in bonuses paid last year ‘shameful’ — President Barack Obama issued a withering critique Thursday of Wall Street corporate behavior, calling it “the height of irresponsibility” for Wall Street employees to be paid …
Discussion:Ben White / NY Times:
What Red Ink? Wall Street Paid Hefty Bonuses -- By almost any measure, 2008 was a complete disaster for Wall Street — except, that is, when the bonuses arrived.
Despite crippling losses, multibillion-dollar bailouts and the passing of some of the most prominent names in the business, employees at financial companies in New York, the now-diminished world capital of capital, collected an estimated $18.4 billion in bonuses for the year...
Felix Salmon / Market Movers:
Let The Bonus Outrage Begin -- The issue of Wall Street bonuses in general, and Merrill Lynch's bonuses in particular, is only just beginning to heat up. The NYT is scandalized today that bonuses in New York are going to total $18.4 billion -- the sixth-largest year on record -- and frankly I too am quite shocked that the average bonus award fell only 36.7%, even as profits simply evaporated...
Chris Bowers / Open Left: The Bonuses Can Still Be StoppedLawhawk / A Blog For All: President Obama Doesn't Quite Get The Concept Of StimulusD-Day: What's Shameful Again?Brendan Scott / New York Post: WALL STREET BONUSES DROP TO LOWEST IN 30 YEARS
Barry Ritholtz / Big Picture
The Moral Hazard of the “Bad Bank” - Yesterday’s 13% surge in bank stocks is a clue as to what an obscene taxpayer giveaway this “bad bank” plan is — its free money for the firms that caused the problems, many of whom still have the same incompetent management in place that caused the problem. Purging toxic assets from bank balance sheets, without punishing the management, shareholders and creditors of these institutions for their horrific judgment will only encourage more of the same in the future. Its moral hazard writ large...
- Why a Big, Bad Bank Might Be Good - Editorial, Investor's Business Daily
- Meredith Whitney Thinks a “Bad Bank” Is a Bad Idea - FT Alphaville
- How To Keep the Banking System in the Private Sector - Robert Reich
- High-Priced Bank Life Support Will Cost Us - Jon Markman, MSN Money
- Let's Be Clear: Your Bank Is Flat Broke - Stephen Gandel, TIME
- The Credit Crisis is Wall Street's Hurricane Katrina - John Gapper, FT
Daily Options Report:
And The Winner Is... -- I ask you, would the Bad Bank have bad tellers, with bad service and bad breath? Would they only take bad checks and offer bounced check rewards? Pay costumers interest on auto loans and yet charge interest on deposits? Alas, these are questions only the wizards behind the curtain (perhaps only those on the “golden commodes) which can answer...
Discussion:Josh Marshall / Talking Points Memo: SANE CRITIQUES — Martin Feldstein's opposition to a Democratic …Rep. David Obey / Legislation: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009Eric / Viking Pundit: The Generational Theft Act moves to the SenateMarc Moore / PoliGazette: New Jobs Under-Stimulated by Dem's PlanFrank James / The Swamp: Economist gives GOP anti-stimulus ammoReal Time Economics: Economists Debate: Diverse Perspectives on StimulusHarry Moroz / The Huffington Post: Rethinking the StimulusSteve Verdon / Outside The Beltway: Martin Feldstein Now Skeptical of the Stimulus PackageMara Liasson / NPR: GOP In Balancing Act As Obama Reaches OutLarry Kudlow / The Corner: Stimulus Criticism Mounts
Discussion:Bill Scher / The Huffington Post: House GOP Tries To Raise Money Off Opposing Economic Help For Everyone Else
Wind industry jobs jumped to 85,000 in 2008, a 70% increase from the previous year, according to a report released Tuesday from the American Wind Energy Association. In contrast, the coal industry employs about 81,000 workers....
Discussion:Jesse Jenkins / WattHead: The Jobs are “Blowin' in the Wind”Jeff Biggers / The Huffington Post: Big Coal Gift in Senate Stimulus Package While Coal Profits Soar
- Where Financial Gurus Are Putting Their own Money - Eleanor Laise, WSJ
- Shock: Davos Leaders Blame System, Not Themselves - Daniel Gross, Slate
- Finding Strength in a Weak Global Market - Michael Kahn, Barron's
- Shareholders Run Companies, Not The Public - J. Hoenig, SmartMoney
- Geithner Has a Shot at Redemption - Allan Sloan, Fortune
- Government's Influence on Credit Here To Stay - Baseline Scenario
- Is The United Kingdom Another Iceland? - Nouriel Roubini, Forbes
- Lehman's Collapse Was a Game Changer - George Soros, Financial Times
- Only the Market Can Save Us From Crisis - Terry Leahy, Daily Telegraph
- On the Failure of Macroeconomists - Justin Wolfers, Freakonomics
- Give the Obama Bailout Benefit of the Doubt - Robert Scheer, The Nation
- How About a Payroll Tax Stimulus? - Lawrence Lindsey, Wall Street Journal
- The Creeping Nationalization of Health Care - Diana Furchtgott-Roth, RCM
- Don't Trust the Experts at Davos - Anatole Kaletsky, Times of London
- The Upside of a Downturn - David Leonhardt, New York Times Magazine
- The Optimum Size of Government - Richard Rahn, Washington Times
- The False Death of Trickle-Down Economics, Part II - John Tamny, RCM
- Hamilton Got the Dollar Right -- Why Can't We? - Steve Forbes, Forbes