Ten large banks are paying back treasury with 68 billion dollars, so that they can be freed from government meddling in paying their executives. Now that all of their accounting book is blessed with marked-to-fantasy, they don’t need the cash anymore. Can we put in a clause in the payback that “please don’t come back again even if you’re insolvent (after squeezing out more bonus for executives)?”
I’ve said many times, and I will repeat it again. Option ARMs and AltA are resetting starting from about now until the end of 2011. The wave of notice of defaults is already coming (Dr. Housing Bubble has got all the charts here). It’s not a question of if, but when (the next wave of financial crisis will hit). Mark-to-fantasy by thinking that you have not sold your stocks (mortgages on the book of these banks) after 60% losses and that they will come back to full value after 10 years will not help at all. The end game will come, when the homeowners stop paying mortgage and/or walk away from properties. When the properties go into foreclosures and get sold, banks have to mark down the losses without a choice. The fact that banks are not in a hurry to foreclose all the properties tell you that the level of losses in a foreclosure will probably destroy the banks. By choosing not to foreclose (and not mark-to-market), insolvency can persist in fantasy land.
And before they go down, CEOs are going to squeeze out more from shareholders, bondholders, and taxpayers. They’re definitely a smart bunch.