Seriously. He said that (on CNBC). On one condition: That all the other managers that are now salivating at the tremendous pot of money they’re going to make for managing the trash the Treasury buys at taxpayer expense ALSO do it for free:
CNBC’s Erin Burnett:. YOU SAID IN YOUR OP-ED (in the Washington Post), THERE ARE IN TERMS OF WHO’S GOING TO MAGAGE THE MONEY ‘There are disinterested firms, some not even based on Wall Street, with the expertise to evaluate these complicated pools of mortgages’- — I WAS CHUCKLING BECAUSE YOU COULD BE TALKING ABOUT PIMCO. WOULD YOU TAKE A HAIRCUT IN TERMS OF YOUR MANAGEMENT FEE JUST TO BE PATRIOTIC AND WE’LL MANAGE THIS MONEY AT A LOWER RATE TO SHOW WE’RE TAKING ONE FOR THE TEAM TOO?
Pimco’s Bill Gross: OH, ERIN, YOU ARE A NEWSBREAKER. NOT ONLY A HAIRCUT, BUT PIMCO WOULD BE THE LEADER HERE IN SUGGESTING TO THE TREASURY WE WOULD WORK FOR NO FEE.
Burnett: NO FEE?
Gross: YOU BET IF EVERYBODY ELSE WORKED ON THE SAME BASIS
So how about it, folks? Care to eliminate your fees?
Well, then, here’s a better idea: Drop this silly plan about buying the banks’ problems. Instead, force the banks to deal with their own problems–by writing the assets down to market value–and then use that $700 billion to recapitalize them by BUYING EQUITY.
That way, the banks get to be reminded about how dumb they were every time they glance at their balance sheets–and folks like Bill Gross, who isn’t remotely responsible for this disaster (and, in fact, screamed from the rooftops about it) don’t have to offer to help save the country for free.
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