Who’s going to answer the phone?

Reading this story on FoxNewsreminded me to post my thoughts on the growing cries for more government regulation of the mortgage and brokerage industries.  Basically, I think we need to stop the Fed interventions and roll back the regulations we have now.

That comes with a caveat though – no regulation and no intervention also implies no bailouts.  That means that Bear Stearns would have shut their doors last week. That means that Citi and JP Morgan wouldn’t be able to dip their hands into the Fed’s cookie jar to stay afloat.  That means that more home owners would be in foreclosure.  But I happen to think that those are all good things.

The trillions of dollars of CDO’s, CDS’s, and derivatives that are based on bad mortgages (and that are being propped up by the Fed’s intervention) need to reflect the losses they’re actually sustaining at some point.  You can’t carry a bad mortgage on the books as an asset at full face value forever, and the longer they delay writing off the losses, the longer it will take to sort through this mess.

Get it out there, get it over with, and move on. 


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