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Opening Bell: 07.31.09

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Regulators Are Getting Tougher On Banks (WSJ)
The Federal Reserve and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency have issued more "memorandums of understanding" than in the past, telling banks to do stuff like suck less, which the "targets" think is way harsh. "It's frustrating and aggravating," said Pat Sheaffer, chairman and chief executive officer of Riverview Bancorp Inc. Bank of America, on notice as well, doesn't like it much either.
'Teachable' Moment Observed With Beer (WSJ)
The president drank Bud Light. Mr. Gates drank Sam Adams Light while Mr. Crowley had a Blue Moon. Mr. Biden, a surprise addition to the session, had a Bucklers, a low-alcohol beer.

US Limits On Bank Pay, Bonuses Face Senate, Obama Skepticism
"Hedge funds and other money managers should be exempt from limits because if you think you are paying too much you can take your money out," said Phillip Goldstein. "It's the same thing with baseball. You see the price on the tickets and if you think it's too much, don't go to the game. I can't believe anybody who took Econ 101 could support this."
After Rescue, New Weakness Seen at A.I.G. (NYT)
If A.I.G.'s incoming premiums shrink, W. O. Myrick, a retired chief insurance examiner warned, "the whole thing's going to collapse in on itself."

The Risk Mirage At Goldman Sachs
Down with VaR! says one guy: "Whatever your opinion of Goldman's fortunes and market forays in this recession, the fact is that a VaR-based analysis of any firm's riskiness is useless. VaR lies. Big time. As a predictor of risk, it's an impostor. It should be consigned to the dustbin. Firms should stop reporting it. Analysts and regulators should stop using it."
HSBC May Post Loss on $15 Billion Bad Loan Provisions (Bloomberg)
Sad trombones all around.
US Administration Working to Keep 'Clunkers' Program (CNBC)
Even though it's basically out of money, etc, etc, etc.
Bernanke's Popularity (FT)
Do you hate the Fed Chairman because he has a facial hair? Is that it?


Former AIG CEO Hank Greenberg (Getty Images)

Opening Bell: 5.10.17

Greenberg won't see any more green; Hertz bet bites Icahn; Jimmy John denies humping shark in the nude; and more.