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Issues Beyond Palo Alto, posted by Ted Rudow III, MA, a member of the Palo Alto High School community, Bank of America exposé
Dear Editor: In the article "Bank of America: Too Crooked to Fail," Rolling Stone reporter Matt Taibbi chronicles the remarkable history of the rise of Bank of America, an institution he says has defrauded "everyone from investors and insurers to homeowners and the unemployed."
In 2008, Bank of America received a $45 billion taxpayer bailout, but the bank has also received billions more in what could be described as shadow bailouts. The bailouts have helped Bank of America's market share grow. It now controls more than 12 percent of the nation's deposits, as well as 17 percent of all home mortgages.
But new questions have arisen over how Bank of America may actually benefit from the deal because the settlement includes a legal waiver to allow banks to escape billions of dollars in lawsuits. There are much, much bigger problems in the areas of creating loans and securitizing the loans. The real fraud was when Bank of America or some company went to a union and said, "Here's a whole bunch of mortgages we want you to buy. They're AAA-rated. They're all good." And they left out derogatory information about how bad the loans really were. That was the real fraud.
Ted Rudow III, MA