Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Mark My Words - They'll Be Back At The Trough

And why the heck wouldn't they repay the Federal government the billions they borrowed?

This way, management can go back to compensating themselves *unencumbered*!

AND, if and when they get into financial trouble again, it's been proven that Big Government taxpayers will simply throw them another lifeline.

Is this a good development for equity shareholders?

Maybe. It may signify that these investment houses are a whole lot healthier.

Or perhaps not. If you're a shareholder of Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and JP Morgan, do you really want them to have carte blanche to continue to pay out-sized bonuses? Do you really want them to *not have to substantially change* the way they run their businesses?

Do you really want the banks' revenue producers to resume sky-is-the-limit incentive plans?

This is precisely the moral hazard of bailouts - that insuring risky behavior only encourages more of it.

Now, if indeed the banks are in better, sustainable shape....it begs the question of whether or not that's *priced-into* their stock prices.

I'm hoping, and betting that whatever glimmer of good news there is, has already been discounted and then some in share prices.

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