Journalism in the Public Interest


The Trade

Once Unthinkable, Breakup of Big Banks Now Seems Feasible

What was made can be unmade.

JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo may have venerable names, but they and the pseudo-venerable Citigroup and Bank of America are all products of countless mergers and agglomerations.

There is no rule of markets that requires a financial system dominated by four cobbled-together, lumbering behemoths.

In U.S. Monetary Policy, a Boon to Banks

The federal government, in ways explicit and implicit, profoundly subsidizes and shelters the banking industry, and the protection is so well established that we barely notice it anymore.

Misdirection in Goldman Sachs’s Housing Short

For One Whistle-Blower, No Good Deed Goes Unpunished

It has been noted repeatedly that almost no top bankers have faced serious consequences for their actions in the financial crisis. But there is a Wall Street corollary that might be even more pernicious: good guys are punished.

At a Time of Needed Financial Overhaul, a Leadership Vacuum

After the worst crisis since the Great Depression, President Obama has unleashed an unusual force to regulate the financial system: a bunch of empty seats.

More Power Over Wall Street, but Little Chance to Discuss It

The most notable thing about the first-ever news conference of the Federal Reserve chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, last week was what wasn't discussed: banking regulation.

Vows of Change at Moody’s, but the Flaws Remain the Same

A former Moody’s analyst describes how the ratings agency’s culture has remained the same, despite pledges to operate differently after the financial meltdown.

In Debate Over Bank Capital Regulation, a Trans-Atlantic Gulf

The United States and Britain are two countries separated by a common financial crisis.

Since the crisis, Anat Admati and her colleagues have been arguing for higher bank capital standards to make the financial system safer. In this country, Professor Admati, who teaches economics and finance at the Stanford business school, has been a voice in the wilderness. In London, she finds a more receptive audience. "The U.S. is so much friendlier to the banks than the U.K.," she says. "You just try to get a word in -- well, the level of the debate is not the same."

Jesse Eisinger

About The Trade

In this column, co-published with New York Times' DealBook, I monitor the financial markets to hold companies, executives and government officials accountable for their actions. Tips? Praise? Contact me at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)