UNEXPECTED

U.S. Sees Profit from Bailout

Here’s a surprise: Almost a year after the U.S. government pumped hundreds of billions of dollars into the nation’s biggest banks, taxpayers are starting to see a return on their generosity. While critics said they’d never see the money again, the U.S. has made a profit of about $4 billion from eight of the biggest banks that have fully repaid their debts to the government. The government has earned an additional $35 million from smaller banks that have paid back their obligations. The government is far from in the clear—The Treasury Department could still take a hit from guarantees on toxic mortgages, not to mention the bailouts of AIG, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and GM and Chrysler.