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Wednesday, December 23, 2009 10:50 AM


Geithner: No 'Second Wave' To Crisis


One sure way we know a second wave to the crisis is likely coming is the preemptive denial of it by those who never saw it coming. Please consider Geithner: There Will Be No 'Second Wave' Crisis.

"We are not going to have a second wave of financial crisis," Geithner said in an interview with National Public Radio. "We cannot afford to let the country live again with a risk that we are going to have another series of events like we had last year. That is not something that is acceptable."

Geithner, interviewed on NPR's "All Things Considered" program, rejected the idea that a serious new crisis could be triggered by lingering problems with commercial real estate loans or with a sudden weakening in the value of the dollar.

"We will do what is necessary to prevent that and that is completely within our capacity to prevent," he said.

However, in a separate interview he conceded that it would take several months before the economy yields positive job growth. Job losses have been easing in recent weeks but the economy still saw 480,000 new claims for unemployment benefits last week. That number is expected to shrink just a bit this week.
Geithner on NPR

Inquiring minds might be interested in the complete NPR interview. Please consider Geithner Voices Confidence About Economic Rebound.

Here is the Transcript of the interview with Michelle Norris. Some snips follow ...
NORRIS: You know that businesses are spending again. The administration has been asking the banks to try to free up more money for small business in particular. And I want you to help me understand something because on one hand the administration is telling the bankers that they need to take fewer risks, that they need to deleverage, that they need to have higher capital reserve. And at the same time you're also telling them that they need to lend more money. Those two things don't seem to square.

Sec. GEITHNER: It is very important that we work with Congress to pass legislation that can put in place financial reforms that can prevent the next crisis. So it's pretty important in the future we build a more stable financial system. We constrain risk taking in the future. But right now the real risk we face is that banks are not lending enough and not going to provide the capital businesses need to grow for the economy to strengthen going forward.

NORRIS: So it's okay for them to take risks right now?

Sec. GEITHNER: Absolutely. Right now the real risk is that the pendulum having been too soft and easy on the lending side. Right now the risk is that banks overcorrect or that supervisors overcorrect. And that's something we need to work against, lean against, because, again, the strength in recovery will depend in part on credit being available to businesses across the county.

NORRIS: You know, pardon me for presenting you with all these doomsday scenarios, but as you know, many people are worried about a second wave of systemic crisis, that either because of commercial real estate or the value of the dollar...

Sec. GEITHNER We're not going to have, Michele, a second wave of financial crisis.

NORRIS: You're that confident? You're certain of it.

Sec. GEITHNER: We'll do what is necessary to prevent that. We cannot afford to let the country live again with a risk that we're going to have another series of events like we had last year. That's not something that is acceptable. And we will prevent that. We will do what is necessary to prevent that, and that is completely within our capacity to prevent.

NORRIS: You're saying you're confident that it won't happen. What levers can you press or pull to make sure that does not happen again?

Sec. GEITHNER: As people saw, when you have the will to act, we have substantial ability to prevent that, and we'll do what's necessary.
The arrogance and ignorance of Geithner are both appalling.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com
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