UNDERNEWS

Undernews is the online report of the Progressive Review, edited by Sam Smith, who has covered Washington during all or part of one quarter of America's presidencies and edited alternative journals since 1964. The Review has been on the web since 1995. See main page for full contents

October 4, 2008

FROM BLACKWATER TO BLACKROCK: PAULSON PRIVATIZING BAILOUT OPERATION

Bloomberg - Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson is hiring as many as 10 asset-management firms to join the lawyers and bankers he is recruiting to jumpstart the government's new $700 billion bank-rescue program.

The Treasury began implementing the plan within an hour of the House of Representatives vote giving Paulson the extraordinary powers he had sought to combat the U.S. financial crisis. Paulson is seeking to assemble a team to determine which toxic securities to target, how to value them and how to arrange purchases.

"This is something that, for a typical company, would take no less than five years,'' said Lynn Turner, a former chief accountant at the Securities and Exchange Commission. "Anyone who thinks they can do this in two weeks is insane.''

Already, BlackRock Inc., Pacific Investment Management Co. and Legg Mason Inc. are seeking to become money managers for the program, people familiar with the matter said. The three firms have been informally advising the Treasury as it negotiated the bailout package with Congress, the people said.

Ed Forst, the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive Paulson hired to head the transition team, started work last week and is charged with helping establish the new Office of Financial Stability.. . . Treasury officials said Forst, who was given a contract worth $5,000, is likely to stay for several weeks before returning to Harvard University, where he sits on the board that oversees the $34.9 billion endowment. . .

1 Comments:

Anonymous Enquido said...

"The bailout has left the Fed holding a vast portfolio of troubled securities. To manage them, Mr. Geithner gave three no-bid contracts to BlackRock, an asset-management firm with deep ties to the New York Fed."

- NY Times, April 26, 2009

we're fucked.

April 27, 2009 12:35 AM  

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