Here’s a roundup of chatter about the A.G.’s probe of three major banks, and how their mortgage-backed securities may have contributed to the epic financial meltdown that we’re not entirely out of yet.
Schneiderman’s investigation is being heralded on the left as meaningful intervention by a regulator who is going after an industry that brought the country to the brink of disaster and got, in return, a taxpayer bailout. Politically, it’s a continuation of the tradition of making the New York attorney general a key watchdog of Wall Street — something first started by Eliot Spitzer.
Eliot Spitzer: “I bet there will be bombshells awaiting us.”
New York Times: “At long last, there is a serious investigation into the mortgage mess.”
Dylan Ratigan: “Promising move. Instead of waiting for federal, state and civil suites to shake out, Schneiderman is going it solo…If we wait to see if the attorney general, [Eric] Holder, files charges we may all die and roll over.”
Matt Taibbi: “This investigation has the potential to be a Mother of All Nightmares situation for the banks…[focusing on] the securitization process is a total prosecutorial bullseye.”
Forbes: “Kudos to Matt Taibbi for leading the charge against Goldman Sachs in his articles in Rolling Stone and as a guest on several TV shows. He might prod the government to do the right thing against Goldman.”
Dow Jones; Morgan Stanley’s Chief Executive said Schneiderman’s probe would be “very firm specific.”
Business Week: “Schneiderman said that any joint accord shouldn’t preclude individual states, such as New York, from continuing their own inquiries.”
ABC News: “Schneiderman is following the aggressive path forged by predecessors Andrew Cuomo and Elliot Spitzer.”
FierceFinance.com: “[T]he well-publicized move once again raises the prospect of criminal charges, though you would have to rate the likelihood of such charges against individual executives as a longshot still.”
TruthDig.com: “One Lawman with the Guts to Go After Wall Street” is the headline. Story goes on to say, “Eric Schneiderman will probably fail, as did his predecessors in that job…But decent folks should be cheering him on.”