Geithner As Santa Claus: It's Always Christmas For The Banks

Via dkos diarist bobswern, the banks' personal Santa Claus Tim Geithner is giving out more gifts:

Financial stocks just caught fire. Someone must be getting bailed out, right? Why yes, say critics of the giant banks. They charge that Monday's rally-stoking mortgage-putback deal between Bank of America (BAC) and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is nothing more than a backdoor bailout of the nation's largest lender. It comes courtesy, they say, of an administration struggling to find a fix for the housing market while quaking at the prospect of another housing-fueled banking meltdown.

"This looks to me like a gift from Tim Geithner," said Chris Whalen of Institutional Risk Analytics. "There's politics all over this."

From the corrupt incompetent Tim Geithner? Say it ain't so. God bless all the banks! What a disgrace.

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    To Military Tracy; I can hear your (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by oculus on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 02:00:14 PM EST
    "voice" on this.  Please type!

    MT -- call home (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by The Addams Family on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 07:37:44 PM EST
    Sorry (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 08:16:05 AM EST
    I was taking a break cuz the lack solutions gets to me sometimes.  I need to go read exactly what they did.

    welcome back! (none / 0) (#40)
    by The Addams Family on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 03:53:28 PM EST
    It's hard (none / 0) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 08:02:32 PM EST
    Things are set to get worse and worse, and every news source is spewing mostly propaganda.  The bar is so low for what is labeled recovery and improvement that it is lying on the ground now and anything that can't clear it or lob itself over in any kind of liars poker way is simply not talked about.

    It looks like at this time that in order to eradicate the double dip on paper as well, that a figure was actually created out of thin air too now.


    hmmm (none / 0) (#1)
    by Capt Howdy on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 09:20:49 AM EST
    comes just as BofA is lawyering up for the wikileaks release.

    Bank Of America Sets Up Swat Team To Combat Wikileaks

    Legal Swat Teams... (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 09:32:14 AM EST
    don't come cheap either...Timmy to the rescue.

    May as well just have the legal assasins send the bill direct to the treasury...at least save some money via an efficient oligarchy.

    Got a typo BTD, Timmy is Satan Clause.


    Well played, Kdog. (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by jeffinalabama on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 09:36:54 AM EST
    Never fear (5.00 / 3) (#4)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 10:28:37 AM EST
    cuts to so called "entitlement programs" and all domestic programs will pay for it.

    The rich of this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom (to rob the poor)-- and that government of the Wall St. and corporate America, by the Wall St. and corporate America, for the Wall St. and corporate America, shall not perish from the earth.

    This government is being brought to you courtesy of the bipartisan efforts of the Obama administration, the Democratic members of Congress and the Republican Party.


    "Entitlement Programs"... (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 10:35:53 AM EST
    LOL...talk about entitlement programs!  I saw we rename the Treasury, make it more accurate...how about the Office of Oligarch Entitlement?

    Not just entitlement programs (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 02:55:13 PM EST
    Watch out for all the new bank fees we're probably gonna get hit with in 2011.

    Banks are considering additional fees on credit cards and checking accounts. But they also are looking at new ways to make money on cash machines and especially debit cards as regulators pinch the cards' conventional revenue streams.

    To counter that lost revenue, banks are thinking about imposing annual fees of $25 or $30 on debit cards, according to people familiar with bank strategies. Some also considering limiting the number of debit-card transactions that a customer can make each month, these people said. Another idea circulating in the industry: Limiting the size of a purchase that a customer could make with a debit card. At the same time, reward programs for debit cards are likely to get the ax, these people say.

    I hate these people almost as much as I hate insurance companies.


    Don't have a credit card (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:04:04 PM EST
    If the banks want to charge me for using a debit card then I am more than willing to go back to using checks and cash. I will also move my money out of the banks and into a credit union.

    Yeah MO! (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:08:43 PM EST
    It's awfully lonely here in the "no banking" section.

    Please, pull up a chair, join me and keep your nickels and dimes in your pocket and your local community...every swipe of a debit or credit card takes money out of your community and puts it the hands of those out to nickel and dime us to death.


    Don't think it's that easy (none / 0) (#12)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:07:28 PM EST
    They may start charging you for checks as well, according to the article.

    Cash will become King (none / 0) (#15)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:14:38 PM EST
    in my world when that happens. A debit card is the banks invention not mine. They receive fees from the vendors (i.e. the people I purchase merchandise from) every time I use my debit card. If they want to lose those fees on my purchases, it is fine with me. I am more than willing to operate on a cash basis.

    Why is this so hard (none / 0) (#29)
    by waldenpond on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 06:44:11 PM EST
    for some people?   I have no sympathy for high credit card rates (I could care less if they charge some sucker 75%), no sympathy for check charges etc.  Simply move your money and use cash.  Where I live, more businesses are tired of dealing with banks and only take cash.

    the thing that stinks (none / 0) (#14)
    by CST on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:09:17 PM EST
    is that there are certain things you just can't do without a credit card.  Like rent a car.  That's why I got one, before I had to do that I was a hold out as well.

    I'm willing to bet BOA is out front on this issue.  Why anyone would ever bank with them is beyond me at this point.


    At least with hotels... (none / 0) (#16)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:32:23 PM EST
    you can use a prepaid CC...it pains me, but Visa/MC rule the world.

    I'd have to load five-ten grand on that puppy to rent a car...needless to say I don't rent cars.  Ya can't have it all:)


    You can reserve a room at a hotel (none / 0) (#18)
    by MO Blue on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:40:40 PM EST
    using a debit card and when it come time to pay, use cash. Don't think the bank will get to charge me unless I actually use the card.

    Haven't rented a car for ages. At one time you could use a debit card and then pay cash when you turned it in. Probably would be SOL if I wanted to do it now.


    Some rental car companies will accept (none / 0) (#19)
    by oculus on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:42:17 PM EST
    debit card, at least in TN.  

    that's the problem (none / 0) (#21)
    by CST on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:06:16 PM EST
    some do, some don't, most don't.

    When I tried they told me "you could use a debit card if you have your own insurance".

    Thanks, but I don't have a car.  That's why I needed to rent one :)

    I need it for work sometimes.  It feels like a waste, but it's infrequent enough that it's still a whole lot cheaper than actually owning one.  And I was rejected from zip car...  But that's a different story.


    I assume... (none / 0) (#22)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:40:39 PM EST
    you'd need a healthy bank balance behind the debit card though, no? Or is a debit card issued against an account with 20 bucks in it good?

    i don't think (none / 0) (#24)
    by CST on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:50:56 PM EST
    that's something they check.

    But debit cards do come with a "credit limit" so to speak, so that's probably what they're looking for.  Its usually a lot lower than a credit card.


    Thanks... (none / 0) (#25)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:56:27 PM EST
    we may have found a loophole for some revenge against these car-rental bastards...a debit card on an empty account with a low-limit is all we need and we can have a ball:)

    The special lady had a scare in Cancun when they tried to screw us for a tiny nick with her card as collateral...but I got the guy to listen to reason. That industry is on my sh*t list too.



    I think (none / 0) (#26)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:58:39 PM EST
    The debit card is only good up to what is actually in your account at the time (some banks may let you go over if you have a savings account with them, or they may have a "reserve" where they let you go $50 or $100 bucks over, but then you get hit with an insufficient funds charge.)

    My source on TN/debit card (none / 0) (#31)
    by oculus on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 09:04:49 PM EST
    is my younger brother--you know, the one who was riding his bike from Chicago to Austin in the winter.  He ended up taking the Greyhound bus back to Chicago, not rental car.  We'll never really know!

    I hate BoA (none / 0) (#17)
    by jbindc on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:32:56 PM EST
    I bank with them because there's a branch close to my mom's house back in Michigan, so if she needs to deposit money to me, it's close, or if I need access to my bank when I'm visiting, I won't get charged (for now) to get my own money.

    But I gave serious thought to kdog's way of life when I read that this morning.  He may be on to something.


    Exactly (none / 0) (#20)
    by ScottW714 on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 03:45:08 PM EST
    Try and catch a flight or buy an MP3 w/o a CC.  I absolutely hate carrying cash.  That being said, it's something I noticed is regional.  When I go home to bar and try and run a tab they look at my CC like it's a flux capacitor and I am from the future.  Certain cities just aren't down with the plastic, NYC was one of them as well which seemed odd because it's fairly expensive.

    Sorry, your fight is courageous, but impractical in the year 2011, especially in my area.  Who made more in person purchases that online purchases this Christmas ?  Living without plastic is like living w/o a cell phone, possible, but impractical.

    As far as BoA, I hate to say this, but they have treated me better than any other bank in my life including credit unions.  I haven't paid any fees in years (except the occasional emergency ATM withdrawal), and my mortgage rate is under 4%.  I know they are slim balls, but so is every other corporation.  From electronics to clothes to petro to even good old US cotton, all at least, if not as exploitative.


    The prepaid... (none / 0) (#23)
    by kdog on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 04:50:32 PM EST
    works for that stuff, to maintain that certain quality of life we've become accustomed to here in the plastic age of grift.  

    They're a rip-off too, don't get me wrong...like 5 bucks a load.  But at least I feel like it is kinda on my terms, and the only time I use it is the rare online purchase (bought all my presents in brick and mortar stores) and travel. The Western Union/Visa partnership gettin' maybe 10-15 bucks outta me a year....plus the leeching on the vendor side by the transaction processing outfits.

    Absolutely right about the slime on everything Scott...but at least I see the value in fuel, clothes, electronics...I'll be damned if I'll ever see the value in what the banker does.  Like Ryan Bingham said, "all he does is sit and think about the money I'm gonna make".


    When I Say Plastic... (none / 0) (#36)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 10:27:49 AM EST
    ... I am using Debit and Credit cards interchangeably.  I was thinking you two were more anti-plastic rather than anti-credit card, which I thought was bit eccentric.

    I will say this kdog, if you can pay off the balance every month using a CC with rewards program you can really stick it to them.  I have a CC card that I use for everything including some bills that take CC payments.  I get 2% towards travel which basically means I get a next to nothing, if not free, vacation every year on the bank.


    Anti-plastic indeed... (none / 0) (#37)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 01:22:33 PM EST
    across the board...the prepaid cc is my sell-out necessary evil.

    I hear ya about the kickbacks available to "deadbeats", to use the industry parlance...but I'm just so down on the thing I don't wanna play anymore than I have too...and there is a price to pay for those kickbacks, namely the piling of interest if a "deadbeat" hits hard times.


    Well... (none / 0) (#38)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 01:43:26 PM EST
    ... If I fall on hard times this first thing I am going to do is fill out every application I can find and amass as much credit as humanly possible.

    Then if my luck continues to spiral, I take the bad credit rating, beats living on the street or going hungry.  I have zero issues with sticking it to them because let's face it, a great deal of the 'deadbeats' are products of their (bank) practices.

    In college my roommate was here from another country.  His secondary mission while here was to accumulate loads of American credit and use every nickel before he went home.  Make it his third, behind trying to bag every blond disco bunny on campus. He did well in a three areas.

    Our credit system was a game for him to master and exploit, if only I could have played...


    Oh yeah... (none / 0) (#39)
    by kdog on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 01:51:38 PM EST
    its a game, and the people like your old roomie sticking it to 'em gives me no qualms either...happy to hear it!  And thats nothing compared to the rampant cc fraud in Russia and Eastern Europe...happy to hear that too, stick it to Visa comrades!

    For me, not playing or limiting my exposure is the best play...trying to die with a clean spot or two on this soul, ya know?  Or at least delude myself:)


    I've actually had great service (none / 0) (#27)
    by Raskolnikov on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 05:57:54 PM EST
    from Wells Fargo over the years.  The worst banking experience I've ever had was through a local credit union, regrettably.  They had a lot of holds where I couldn't get at money in my account which resulting in a few embarassing situations and their fee schedule was significantly more than Wells Fargo.  

    Example: I changed address and the post office accidentally sent my fathers mail to my new one (had formerly been living with him and we have similar names).  When that happens they send a notification to the sender of the mail, the CU updated his address then charged him $2 for not alerting them to the change of address.  That would never happen at Wells Fargo for all their other faults.  I feel its a bit like the Wal Mart thing, if you don't have much money its a better deal to go with the big corporations regrettably.

    Although, I did once get charged for checking my balance for my WF account at a WF atm!  Oddly, I didn't get charged to go inside the bank and get them to print out 3 months of my bank history.  Go figure (and I got the balance check reversed with a phone call).  


    I, too (none / 0) (#28)
    by Zorba on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 06:40:06 PM EST
    had my only bad banking experience with a credit union.  We switched to a small, locally-owned bank with only a few branches, which was excellent.  Then it got eaten by a larger bank (although not one of the huge nationals- this is a regional bank with 750 branches).  So far, so good- they were very helpful with the transition, and have been fine so far.  

    Wonder if I'll get a gift? (none / 0) (#6)
    by BobTinKY on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 12:02:41 PM EST

    Toxic mortgage backed securities (none / 0) (#7)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 12:55:35 PM EST

    Is this about the toxic mortgage backed securities that were created and marketed by Fannie and Freddie?

    So funny!!!! (none / 0) (#8)
    by waldenpond on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 01:44:54 PM EST
    Jeez, I needed a laugh.  Thanks.

    Remember (none / 0) (#32)
    by Harry Saxon on Wed Jan 05, 2011 at 09:37:46 PM EST
    it wasn't over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor.



    It is about toxic mortgage backed securities (none / 0) (#34)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 08:24:59 AM EST
    But these were the ones created by Countrywide.

    What a mess (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Jan 06, 2011 at 08:41:49 AM EST
    And all this will do is keep the doors at BofA open.  And for a 1.28 billion dollar payment from BofA the American taxpayer will pay for $117 billion in failed mortgages that are in the mortgage backed securities that rating agencies never really looked at and fraudenlently perfected and rated.

    This is a drop in the bucket though, and we still have more MBS sold than we have mortgages...so I have no idea how that will shake out.  But Tim Geithner is doing everything in his power to avoid actual scrutiny of the MBS because if it becomes accepted that they are mostly fraudulent or cannot or will not be paid.....wow, Wall Street as it exists today blows sky high.

    I don't understand how the FDIC can have more problems than it can deal with either.  We have enormous unemployment.  Hire some fricken people, let's get with the program because these problems are not going away.

    Once again though IMO, the FDIC should have taken over the banks and if taxpayer money went anyplace at all it should have gone into the putbacks that were needed to prevent the destruction of people's pensions and other such basic life necessities.  Saving the banks in their existing infrastructure was not necessary and IMO has actually enabled further destruction of our economy as the banks as they exist don't want to make money the old fashioned way anymore.

    From everything that I've read outside of this putback gift, 2011 is going to be a good year for investors because of all the government juicing of the markets.  As the engine of our economy continues to fail though so will everything else, and the anger is going to get real ugly.  By the time we hit 2012 we are going to be in deep trouble, bank boards and CEOs will be in the biggest trouble with the people.  Expect anyone who doesn't want to face the music to have secreted their holdings of gold and rare earth minerals to some nonextradition country and making a beeline for the airport gates.