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Washington
Inside Washington (07/22/2009)
* WASHINGTON (7/23/09)-- White House National Economic Council Director Lawrence Summers has suggested that it would be prudent for some financial institutions to recognize that profits they are currently enjoying reflect the government aid that has been distributed to bolster the economy. (Bloomberg News July 22) Summers said companies have benefited specifically from programs to guarantee debt, backstop commercial-paper issuance and to support weaker financial institutions that were those company’s counterparties, as well as benefiting from a general “aura of government support." However, the president’s chief economic advisor warned that while the economy is no longer in a free fall, it is also unlikely that the nation will experience a robust recovery in 2010. Summers also criticized some banks doing too little to help reduce the number of mortgage foreclosures despite receiving government aid. … * WASHINGTON (7/23/09)--The third-ranking Democrat on the Senate Banking Committee, Rep. Jack Reed of Rhode Island has said Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke deserves a second term in that position because of actions the Fed leader has taken over the past year to help stabilize the economy. Bernanke’s term expires Jan. 31, 2010. To date, President Obama has declined to share his thoughts publicly on who he might want to fill that post. Bernanke is a Republican appointed by former President George W. Bush in 2006. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) has also indicated he would not be “displeased” if Bernanke were re-upped to head the Fed. (Bloomberg.com July 22)… * WASHINGTON (7/23/09)—The U.S. Treasury Department has drafted a bill that would bar credit rating agencies from selling consulting services to companies they rate, and would force the agencies to disclose any conflicts of interests. The bill sent to Capitol Hill is intended to reduce or eliminate rating shopping (American Banker July 22)…


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