Policy Documents

Breaking the Bank of Citibank

Matthew Glans –
December 18, 2009

Citibank's effort to sell stock in its company to raise funds to pay off its obligations under the Troubled Asset Relief Program speaks volumes about how many banks feel about the bank bailouts and their long-term effects. Sean Lengell's article, "Citigroup to repay $20B in TARP loans" (Business, Monday), glosses over the crux of the story - the burdensome regulations under TARP that were the impetus for Citibank's repayment.

TARP recipients like Citi have discovered that government bailouts always involve more regulatory control and more political influence over lending. Bailouts and increasingly onerous regulations are woefully ineffective at solving the root causes of the current crisis. They succeed only in propping up failing companies. The Obama administration should allow the market to run its course.