More TARP money! The outrage! Well get used to it. The Senate just freed up the second half, so if your blood pressure spikes every time you hear about another failing firm getting federal money, you might want to get some pills for that.
The latest: Chrysler Financial is getting $1.5 billion to make auto loans. More bailout money for the auto industry.
But it’s not the most egregious bailout we’ve heard. Auto dealers are adament that they’d be selling more if cash were more available for loans, and we know that GMAC is lending more heavily now than they were before they got their money. They may be the only financial institution that’s actually ratcheted up lending heavily post TARP, so give them credit for that. Chrysler Financial will likely do the same.
What’s more, there’s no point in bailing out the auto makers if consumers can’t get loans to finance car purchases. Yes, this has a shade of throwing good money after bad, which is typically a bad idea, but if there’s no auto financing, it’s a guarantee that the car maker cash will be a pure waste (we think it probably will be either way).
The handling of the whole bailout has been a scandal. This particular part funding isn’t worth freaking out about.