Luchtime Links 12-3

December 3, 2009

A cloud still hangs over Bhopal (Mehta, NYT)

Japanese companies cut capital spending at record rate (Ujikane, Bloomberg)

Black caucus seeks to ease radio’s woes (Lipton, NYT) This is certainly interesting. Remember the CBC skipped the vote on the financial reform package. They want the administration to pressure Goldman and GE to renegotiate loans to a prominent black radio station in NYC.

Treasury delays release of U.S. government’s GAAP financials (fms.treas.gov) Normally this report is released in December, but the 2009 report has been pushed back two months apparently. Could be a good reason. Waiting for a call from these folks…

Bank of America to repay TARP (Rauch, Reuters) Good news here. As part of the deal to repay the full $45 billion, BofA will raise $18.8 billion of common equity, boosting their TCE ratio significantly. That will reduce potential return on equity for shareholders, but it will strengthen the bank’s capital position so that it can absorb writedowns, which are likely to continue for some time. Geithner gets points for this, though I’m still not a big fan.

Goldman Sachs presentation: Why our people get paid so much (GoldmanSachs) This is the pdf that Goldman is giving to investors in order to justify setting aside $16.7 billion so far this year for compensation expense. It’s a decent argument…for shareholders. Of course all of these profits come courtesy of taxpayers, without whom Goldman would have failed.

Next steps for FHA (CalculatedRisk) HUD secretary Shaun Dononvan says, among other things, that FHA will hold lenders accountable for origination quality. Does that mean they could put more mortgages back to originators? If they do this in a big way, then it’s probably not appropriate for banks like Wells Fargo to pretend that off-balance sheet conforming mortgages pose no risk for shareholders….

Bernie Sanders puts hold on Bernanke (McGraine/Javers, Politico) If Bernie doesn’t lift his hold, it will take 60 votes to get Bernanke through the Senate. It’s interesting, the array of folks opposed to Bernanke. The one thing uniting them is the Fed’s rescue of the banking sector. The noise will only grow louder when Goldman pays its bonuses…

Trichet says ECB to scale back loans (Pitchford, Reuters) The ECB is pulling back faster than the Fed or the Bank of England.

Groom changes Facebook relationship status at the altar (Van Grove, Mashable) Really? Social networking bubble anyone? Hat tip DLH.

Uruguayan Director gets $30 million to make this YouTube vid, which cost him $500, into a movie…(looks like he got lots of free help)

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not one d*mn mention of taxpayer generosity on GS’s powerpoint.GS should stand for general schedule, which is how all Government Sachs employees should be paid. bunch of welfare queens.