Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Break up the big banks

In case anyone needs a (US-centred) list of influential people who support breaking up the big banks, here is one.

Nobel prize-winning economist, Joseph Stiglitz
Nobel prize-winning economist, Ed Prescott
Former chairman of the Federal Reserve, Alan Greenspan
Former chairman of the Federal Reserve, Paul Volcker
Former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich
Dean and professor of finance and economics at Columbia Business School, and chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush, R. Glenn Hubbard
Simon Johnson (and see this)
President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Thomas Hoenig (and see this)
President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, Richard Fisher (and see this)
President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, Thomas Bullard
Deputy Treasury Secretary, Neal S. Wolin
The President of the Independent Community Bankers of America, a Washington-based trade group with about 5,000 members, Camden R. Fine
The Congressional panel overseeing the bailout (and see this)
The head of the FDIC, Sheila Bair
The head of the Bank of England, Mervyn King
The leading monetary economist and co-author with Milton Friedman of the leading treatise on the Great Depression, Anna Schwartz
Economics professor and senior regulator during the S & L crisis, William K. Black
Economics professor, Nouriel Roubini
Economist, Marc Faber
Professor of entrepreneurship and finance at the Chicago Booth School of Business, Luigi Zingales
Economics professor, Thomas F. Cooley
Economist Dean Baker
Economist Arnold Kling
Former investment banker, Philip Augar
Chairman of the Commons Treasury, John McFall
Paul Krugman
The Bank for International Settlements
Stanley Fischer

As Krugman noted:

"I’d love to see those financial giants broken up, if only for political reasons: it’s bad to have banks so big they can often write laws."

This is a tax justice issue, in the sense that everything is a tax justice issue these days.

There are plenty of technical arguments for breaking up the big banks, but


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