Lunchtime Links 9-18
FDIC considers using Treasury line of credit (WSJ) This would be a shame. FDIC should keep charging special assessments on banks before taxpayers are forced to borrow to replenish the fund. CR notes that Senator Carl Levin has asked Bair not to charge another assessment because it would hurt small banks. That’s just misdirection; FDIC charges special assessments as a % of total deposits, which means the biggest banks pay the most. 95% of banks got a free ride for years, not paying ANY premiums for deposit insurance from 1996-2006. Now they have to pay. Special assessments are an good way to shrink the financial system; it reduces the profitability of the business!
FHA’s cash requirements will drop below requirement (WaPo) I sniff another bailout…
Sotomayor issues challenge to century of corporate law (WSJ) “Judges ‘created corporations as persons, gave birth to corporations as persons,’ she said. ‘There could be an argument made that that was the court’s error to start with…[imbuing] a creature of state law with human characteristics.'”
Blackrock’s Fink says Obama rules threaten market (Bloomberg, ht NC) Banks that service mortgages don’t want to modify them because they also hold the home equity loans on their books. If you modify the first mortgage, the home equity loan gets wiped out (right?). And the four largest services — yeah: Citi, BofA, Wells, Chase — have $450 billion worth of home equity loans on their books.
Lawmakers inside advantage (Marketplace) You’d think there would be a law that prevented legislators from trading on inside information. Nope.
Skype founders sue eBay (linkedandloaded) “Perhaps I’m missing something, but eBay spent
$2.6 billion to acquire Skype, yet somehow structured a deal that permitted the founders to retain the copyright to the source code?!?!”