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Review: Bairing the strain of failed regulation

October 12, 2012

Former U.S. bank regulator Sheila Bair is by no means perfect, as several incidents in “Bull by the Horns” demonstrate. But she put taxpayers first and argued for banks to shoulder more of the burden for the industry’s failures, which is how the system is supposed to work.

Regulator grudge match redux: Geithner vs Bair

June 21, 2012

The former FDIC chief has formed an independent group to help push forward reforms in the U.S. financial system. The primary pressure point will be the council of regulators led by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. The two have sparred before. But their interests now look aligned.

Regulatory arbitrage could go far beyond Basel III

March 10, 2011

As reforms play out around the world, for instance in derivatives, there's also the possibility that entire business lines will migrate -- raising a whole new set of systemic risks.

FDIC nibbles nicely at bank risk

January 8, 2010

Sheila Bair looks to be leading the regulatory race to the top. The agency she oversees, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, has recently unveiled a handful of clever ideas to contain risky bank behavior and protect the nation’s deposit insurance fund. Rival watchdogs fighting for turf will find it difficult to ignore FDIC’s latest tactics.

GMAC shows it’s time to roll up TARP

November 2, 2009

The end result is a sort of crony capitalism where TARP money -- originally meant for buying toxic bank assets -- is propping up a politically sensitive sector of the economy while subjecting it to political control.

The Citi leaks

October 9, 2009

Citigroup should end the charade and release a still-secret consultant’s report that supposedly gave rave reviews — no kidding — to Vikram Pandit and most of his management team.

Bair’s summer in the Citi

September 30, 2009

Sheila Bair and Dick Parsons may not be best friends, but they certainly spent a lot of time together this summer. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp head Bair and the Citigroup chairman met or spoke on the phone on at least five occasions during the summer, FDIC records show. Parsons got more official face time with her than any single bank executive.

The FDIC tries a new gimmick

September 29, 2009

In the latest government gimmick to protect bank capital, the FDIC plans to replenish its Deposit Insurance Fund by front-loading regular premiums in lieu of another "special assessment." The good news is that the fund gets replenished and taxpayers don't foot the bill. The bad news is that Sheila Bair is missing a great opportunity to shrink the financial sector.