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Inside Washington (03/23/2009)
* WASHINGTON (3/24/09)--The Treasury Department Monday released information about its plan--the Public Private Partnership Investment Program --to handle toxic assets. The program will be designed around three principles: maximizing the impact of each taxpayer dollar, shared risk and profits with private sector participants, and private sector price discovery. “This approach is superior to the alternative of either hoping for banks to gradually work these assets off their books or of the government purchasing the assets directly,” the Treasury said in a statement. “Simply hoping for the banks to work legacy assets off over time risks prolonging a financial crisis. But if the government acts alone in directly purchasing legacy assets, taxpayers will take on the risk of such purchases ... * WASHINGTON (3/24/09)--The banking industry’s fourth-quarter net loss increased to $32.1 billion from $26.2 billion during the fourth quarter, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC)’s quarterly banking profile, released Friday. The profile was updated from its original release Feb. 26. Other items of note: net income for all of 2008 was revised to $10.2 billion from $16.1 billion. The decline in the industry's total equity capital in the fourth quarter increased from $3.7 billion to $10.1 billion, but the additional goodwill write-downs had no effect on the industry's regulatory capital, because goodwill is not included in regulatory capital, FDIC said ... * WASHINGTON (3/24/09)--Some borrowers have failed to make even one payment on their new mortgages, which are insured by the government, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) said last week (National Mortgage News March 23). The defaults indicate fraud, said Lisa Gore, assistant special agent for the criminal investigation division in the HUD inspector general’s office. The investigation involved more than 100 loans, she told attendees of a financial industry conference last week ...


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