Monday, September 29, 2008

Bailout roundup for September 29

The TARP failed to pass in the House today. We review below last-minute responses to the plan.

HSBC analysts say that there are $3tr of troubled assets which might be bought under the TARP.

Nouriel Roubini's critique of the bailout is on point. Steven Davidoff is his usual judicious and skeptical delight. Naked Capitalism and Clusterstock say the changes in the bailout bill are "cosmetic" (and they are).

Interfluidity says at least Paulson was honest about what he wanted. And no financial legerdemain can solve the problems the country faces -- if the TARP passes and the depression still comes, what then?

Brad DeLong argues in favor of straightforward nationalizations. And Carl Icahn argues for more restrictions on executive compensation and corporate governance.

The Economist carries a mealy-mouthed article on the TARP, lamely arguing that it is better to pass a flawed plan now than to force Congress to stay in session for another week. We would underscore the extent to which panic around the TARP has been generated, self-servingly, by Congress and the Administration.

The FEI Financial Reporting Blog looks at the consequences for mark-to-market accounting.

Becker and Posner have lost the thread.

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