Today, CEOs from the largest banks receiving the first batch of funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), billions of dollars initially designed to loosen the credit crunch, will be visiting Washington today to be grilled by the House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee. There is no doubt that the bankers will be asked to describe and justify how money from the government was spent (or not spent).
I think it’s fair to know how $176 billion of taxpayer money, lent to the government by investors, has been used to stabilize the banking system. Answering questions will be:
- Vikram Pandit, Citigroup
- Kenneth Lewis, Bank of America
- Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs
- James Dimon, JP Morgan Chase
- John Mack, Morgan Stanley
- Robert Kelly, Bank of New York Mellon
- Ronald Logue, State Street
- John Stumpf, Wells Fargo
With taxpayer money invested in these companies, some newly designated as banks just so they could receive funds from the TARP, these CEOs are now partially working for the public. They answer to all Americans. Do you have any questions for these eight CEOs?
Update: As I was writing this post, David Ellis from CNN offered four questions he would ask the CEOs:
- What did you do with the money?
- What have you done to act more responsibly?
- How many more potential losses are there?
- How did you get to Washington?
What would you add?