financial crisis

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.

Buffett Will Bank $3.5 Billion for Saving Goldman

Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett extracted onerous terms from Goldman Sachs when he saved it from a potential meltdown. Two years later, Wall Street is healthy again, Goldman wants Buffett out of its hair, and he's looking at a $3.5 billion profit on that $5 billion lifeline.

Morgan Stanley Earnings Preview: Profits Will Fall

Morgan Stanley is expected to report sharp declines in third-quarter earnings and revenue ahead of Wednesday's opening bell, hurt by months of weak trading activity. The financial giant is forecast to post earnings of 15 cents a share, less than half the 38 cents a share booked a year ago.

2010 U.S. Budget Deficit Comes in Below Expectations

Investors received another sign Friday that the U.S. economy is continuing to heal: The 2010 U.S. budget deficit came in at a smaller-than-predicted $1.29 trillion. Though it was still the second-highest deficit on record, the numbers reflect growth in tax revenues, and thus in the economy.

Can the Global Economy Thrive Without the U.S.?

Three years ago, the financial crisis that hit America spread across the globe, dragging the world into its deepest recession in seven decades. Now, the U.S. recovery is losing momentum, but economists say this time, when America sneezes, the world doesn't have to catch a cold.

Flawed Incentives Were the Rot Behind the Mortgage Crisis

The mortgage-backed securities meltdown whose effects still haunt our economy sprang from a simple cause: The rules of the game gave big incentives to every player involved to ignore the problems and keep collecting their fees. And despite financial reform, those rules haven't changed much.

Banker -- or Reptile?!

As a final capper to our week of Lehman coverage, we humbly offer a different look at the masters of the universe who played the game, ruled the street, and walked away with wheelbarrow loads of cash. We've matched shots of some of the coldest, hardest predators in the world... and a bunch of cuddly reptiles.