Relevant and even prescient commentary on news, politics and the economy.

WaMu tries to lend $9,000 to Cliff105 at subprime

Robert Waldmann notes a bit of financial news that must be read to be believed. Cliff105 who is between jobs and reading about the financial crisis receives an interesting bit of junk mail. a credit card offer from my recently failed bank, Washington Mutual. Normally, I throw these credit card offers into the recycle bin […]

Mark to Market Accounting

Robert Waldmann is about to share his ignorance on banking, banking regulation, accounting, And accounting standards all in one post. You know the end is near when ordinary people get interested in accounting standards. A wide variety of politicians have decided that the problem with the US financial system is Mark to Market Accounting. It […]

What Is to be done ?

Robert Waldmann OK what now ? Unless someone has just submitted a post, AngryBear doesn’t have a post on what to do now that the House Republicans (and some Democrats) have voted down the Paulson-Dodd-Frank bailout bill. The contingent consensus of the Left Blogosphere seems to have been to go for the Swedish solution if […]

How did Lehman manage that ?

Robert Waldmann A commenter over at naked capitalism notes that $110b of senior LEH debt went from trading .95 to .12 in a matter of days …. If you include the less senior debt that is trading at essentially zero, LEH had $110b hole in its balance sheet. And just days before this, the market […]

Financial Arsonists ?

Robert Waldmann Many people are using the term “arsonists” as a loose metaphor for people who share the blame for the current financial crisis. They aren’t suggesting that anyone actually wanted a financial crisis. Cocking my tinfoil hat I will note that it is entirely possible that someone has been making out like a bandit […]

The Buffett Buffer

Robert Waldmann Major financial crisis news. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said it will get a $5 billion investment from billionaire Warren Buffett’s company, marking one of the biggest expressions of confidence in the financial system since the credit crisis intensified early this month. Look $5 billion is not just a vote of confidence.Goldman Sachs is […]

Credit Default Swaps Again

by Robert Waldmann My post on “what the hell are credit default swaps for” got lots of comments and I learned a lot from the comment thread. I continue my effort at remedial education via blogging. First a very simple article by Martin HutchisonDoes this guy know what he is writing about ? Key quote […]

Fannie and Freddie Capital Requirements Lowered in March

by Robert Waldman I missed this at the time. * MARCH 19, 2008 Fannie, Freddie Lending Power May RiseBy JAMES R. HAGERTY and DAMIAN PALETTA The regulator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is expected to announce a plan this morning that will give the government-sponsored mortgage investors more scope to prop up the home-mortgage […]

Paulson’s Skin in Paulson’s game

Henry Paulson promises that he will spend the 700,000,000,000 of our dollars over which he wants total control wisely. I say he be required to put his money where his mouth is. Ask him how much he expects them to be worth after he has spent them on mortgage backed assets and tell him he […]