financial crisis

How the State of the Economy Has Changed Under Obama

Upon taking office in 2009, Obama inherited two costly wars and an economy that had violently imploded just months before. What's changed since then? Quite a bit, but the record is decidedly mixed. Here's a midterm report card of key indicators of the country's economic health.

They Called the Meltdown but Haven't Scored Well Since

There's no shortage of pundits who shot to fame on the back of a bold, contrarian call only to come up empty afterwards. Meredith Whitney and Nouriel Roubini are just two pundits who called the meltdown while most others were oblivious. Too bad they've fared less well lately.

Volcker to Resign From Economic Recovery Advisory Board

Paul Volcker, chairman of the Economic Recovery Advisory Board for President Barack Obama, is set to step down from the position next month. As a key adviser to the president, Volcker has advocated for tougher financial regulations and counseled the government on fiscal policy.

Savvy Tips for Shell-Shocked Investors

After getting hammered by the financial crisis two years ago, investors are finally showing signs of crawling out of their shells again. But they're still scarred and likely to be playing it a lot safer this time around. And a new book holds promise for helping them do that.

Stocks Climb Back to Their Pre-Lehman Disaster Level

Stocks closed broadly higher Tuesday, helped by more deal activity in the financial sector and upbeat earnings from the tech sector. After more than two years, the market has regained all its losses following the implosion of Lehman Brothers in September 2008.

What Recovery? Most Americans See Worse Times Ahead

In a nationwide survey conducted by Marist College, that 53% of those polled think the U.S. will see more economic hardship ahead. Eight percent were unsure, while 39% felt the worst of the fallout from the 2008 financial crisis had come and gone.

The Hidden Cost of Big Wall Street Bonuses to Society

Though most Americans wish that Congress would rein in excessive pay on Wall Street, that won't happen while the huge campaign contributions keep flowing. And the financial industry's big money shell game drains away something more precious from our society than money -- it siphons off talent.

The Fed's Commercial Paper Buying Knew No National Boundaries

During the heat of the financial crisis, Ben Bernanke's Federal Reserve doled out a mountain of money to keep the damage from getting any worse. But if you think American companies were the biggest beneficiaries of this largess, you'd be wrong.

Six Reasons Why Goldman Is Wrong on a Banking Recovery

On Thursday night, venture capitalist and DailyFinance columnist Peter Cohan went on CNBC's "The Kudlow Report" to debate whether the banking industry is at the start of a period of recovery, as Goldman Sachs claimed this week. Here's why he argued that Goldman was dead wrong.

Has WikiLeaks Rumor Made Bank of America a Buy?

When WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange asserted that his next big leak would involve documents from a major unnamed bank, investors in Bank of America got nervous and the stock has been on bumpy ride. The question now is: Have the WikiLeaks worries made BofA shares a better buy?

Federal Reserve Releases Massive Amount of Bailout Data

The Fed on Wednesday released detailed information about the efforts it took to stabilize financial markets during the recent downturn. The Fed, which is facing increasing criticism from conservatives, defended its actions, and noted that no money was lost on its bailout programs.

AIG Sells $2 Billion in Bonds

Bailed-out insurance giant American International Group sold $2 billion of bonds in its first debt offering since it was rescued in 2008. The offering was an important test of whether investors think the insurer can stand on its own.

Fed to Name Firms That Claimed $3.3T in Emergency Aid

The plan to publish the names of recipients of emergency aid during the financial crisis marks "A significant step forward in opening the veil of secrecy that exists in one of the most powerful agencies in government," one senator said.

GM IPO Brings In $11.7 Billion for the U.S. Treasury

The initial public offering of General Motors last week netted $11.7 billion for the U.S. Treasury, which invested taxpayer money into keeping the then-struggling automaker solvent during the financial crisis as part of its Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Meredith Whitney Warns of 5,000 Bank Branch Closures

The financial analyst who rose to fame for her bearish calls on banks ahead of the financial crisis, sees more bad news ahead, predicting that banks will close 5% of their branch offices over the next year and a half.

Jury Rejects Bank's 'Meltdown Defense' in Fraud Case

In a case with wider implications for the financial industry, jurors in a class-action securities fraud suit found that BankAtlantic Bankcorp was liable to shareholders for about $42 million for making false statements about the bank's real estate portfolio and net income.

Was Washington Right to Bail Out GM and Wall Street?

Historians will look back on Washington's bailout of GM and Wall Street as the right move. That's because it's now clear that the costs of doing nothing would have been far higher, and it turns out that taxpayers may suffer only limited losses on this economic Hail Mary pass.

The Foreclosure Mess Is Potentially Devastating

The Congressional Oversight Panel created in the wake of TARP to oversee and monitor the Treasury Department has issued a devastatingly clear report about the mortgage mess and its legal implications, which are ugly.

Wall Street Firms' 2010 Profits May Fall 69% From a Year Earlier

Wall Street firms' collective 2010 profits may fall 69% from a year earlier on less activity in the securities industries, more financial regulation, and fewer gains from Federal government bailouts, according to a New York State Comptroller report. Nevertheless, 2010 profits still may be the fourth-highest on record.

Ireland in Crisis Talks With EU Over Bailout

Ireland headed into a confrontation Tuesday with leaders of the European Union and other struggling members of the eurozone on whether to seek a financial bailout as jitters continued to disrupt the continent's financial markets.

More People Repaid Credit Card Debt in October

U.S. credit card delinquencies fell in October to the lowest levels of the year as more people were able to restart payments on their consumer debt, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing company filings.

Investment Banks Exploit Volcker Rule Loophole

Investment banks are working around new regulations restricting them from putting their own capital into short-term investments: The Wall Street institutions are sidestepping the Volcker Rule by making direct purchases of securities, companies and properties, which are considered longer-term investments.

A Swedish-Style Rebound? Not Likely for the U.S.

In Saturday's New York Times, Gretchen Morgenson profiled economist Ian Shepherdson, who's taking a more bullish stance. Namely, he sees the U.S. perhaps following Sweden's example of a sharp comeback after financial disaster. Here's why that's a bad call.

Financial Crisis Commission Scrambles for a Publisher

The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission had planned to publish its findings in book form with Little, Brown. But the unusual deal between the two, which involved an advance payment from the publisher, has fallen apart, and PublicAffairs Books has stepped in as the new publisher.

Why the Fed's Economic Plan Is Failing

Bernanke & Co.'s zero-interest-rate policy is backfiring or having even more pernicious results. Only the wealthy benefit from rising financial assets, as average Americans -- encouraged to add to their indebtedness -- are further impoverished. Risky speculation is again being rewarded.

Economist Joseph Stiglitz: Put Corporate Crooks in Jail

In an interview, the Nobel Prize winning economist decries the institutionalized system of skewed incentives that allowed Wall Street bankers and other corporate execs to gamble with the country's wealth, and then get away largely scot-free. What happened to "with justice for all," he asks.