Letter: Those Banks We Bailed Out

To the Editor:

Reading the April 22 article headlined “Wall Street Betting Billions on Homes” brought to mind the bumper-sticker “If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention.”

The very same banks that brought down the economy and were bailed out by trillions (not billions) in TARP money, and more importantly Federal Reserve loans, purchases and guarantees, are now buying up homes that could be going to lower- and middle-income households. And they are doing it in part with zero-interest loans not available to community banks or individuals, provided by the Federal Reserve to save the balance sheets of the big banks. The result will be high rents paid to banks, instead of mortgages, and absentee landlords with no real investment in the communities where the homes are located. This ultimately means higher prices for homes, making them less affordable.

This didn’t need to happen, but it did because Congress (Republicans and Democrats) are bought and paid for by big money, and no single sector of the economy pays more for them than the financial sector.

The big banks that were too big to fail now control a larger share of the banking industry then they did in 2007, and the same complex investment vehicles still exist in spite of, or because of, the completely inadequate Dodd-Frank “Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act,” which is being watered down even further during implementation.

Unless and until we are prepared to stop the corruption of our elected officials by big money, we can expect nothing but more of the same.

Ted Siegler



Wall Street Betting Billions on Homes

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Miami — Big investors are pouring unprecedented amounts of money into real estate hit hard by the housing crash, bringing those moribund markets back to life but raising the prospect of another Wall Street-fueled bubble that won’t be sustainable. Drawn by the prospect of double-figure profit margins on rents and the resale of homes whose prices plummeted in the crash, …