The Meltdown

Banks Need More Dough

The markets have been comparatively stable the past few weeks, but the days of bank bailouts are not over. Both The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times run stories today saying that, as The Times puts it, "the banks need more taxpayer money." Citigroup, which has already received a $45 billion bailout, is now considering breaking up into separate banks and wants, according to another Journal article, to shrink by a third. In a speech yesterday, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke said, "More capital injections and guarantees may become necessary to ensure stability and the normalization of credit markets." Barack Obama has requested the second half of the $700 billion TARP funds. Policy makers are considering reviving those funds' original purpose—to buy up bad securities from banks.