criticism

Q: You have also received criticism from some on the left– including writer Matt Taibbi and Wall Street documentarian Charles Ferguson– who say that while you’ve convicted insider traders, you’ve missed the big guys who committed the mortgage fraud that led to the financial crisis. How do you respond do that? A: I would suggest that some of these critics go to law school and apply themselves and become prosecutors and make the case that they think we should be making. This is by reputation and track record the most aggressive office in white-collar crime in the country ever, and if we’re not bringing a certain kind of case, it’s because the evidence is not there. Pure and simple. [Worth]

“Life is hard enough, and I think this constant lecturing on ethics and on integrity by many stakeholders is probably the most frustrating part of the equation. Because I don’t think there are many people who are perfect,” Mr. Ermotti said in an interview at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. “We are far from being perfect…but it’s not going to be very helpful to be constantly bashing banks.” […] Mr. Ermotti, a Swiss native who has spent his entire career in the banking industry, said he is growing frustrated with what he sees as some regulators, politicians, shareholders, clients, journalists and rival banks holding UBS to a higher standard than they hold themselves. “When I look around, I don’t think there are many banks that can come to us and say they are the example that should be followed,” he said. Speaking of a broader group of industry “stakeholders,” including regulators and politicians, Mr. Ermotti said: “None of them can be overly critical.” [WSJ]

President Barack Obama, asked about former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers as a candidate for Federal Reserve chairman, said his former economic adviser is being unfairly criticized in public debate about the selection, lawmakers said after a private meeting with the president. “He took a minute to stand up for Larry Summers,” said Representative Brad Sherman of California, following a meeting with House Democrats today. Obama then met with Senate Democrats. Obama told House Democrats he hadn’t decided whom to appoint as Fed chairman — though he said Summers was being unfairly criticized, Sherman said. Summers and Janet Yellen, the Fed’s current vice chairman, are the two leading contenders to replace Chairman Ben S. Bernanke, whose term expires Jan. 31, according to people familiar with the search. Representative John Larson, a Connecticut Democrat, said the president “hasn’t begun the process but he was, I thought, very adamant in his defense of the service Larry Summers has provided.” [Bloomberg, earlier re: toys]