Thursday, February 07, 2008

Poetic Justice

I don't agree with Warren Buffet about some things - the estate tax comes to mind - but he's got it right in this speech in Toronto:

TORONTO (Reuters) - The woes in the U.S. financial sector are "poetic justice" for bankers who designed and sold complex investments that have since gone sour, billionaire investor Warren Buffett said on Wednesday.

The head of the Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N: Quote, Profile, Research) (BRKb.N: Quote, Profile, Research) group of companies also played down worries about a credit crunch by saying that recent interest rate cuts mean low-cost funds are readily available.

But he warned that the U.S. dollar will continue to slide unless the country can rein in its yawning trade deficit -- the "biggest factor" behind the decline. Still, he said, the U.S. economy will "do very well over time."

It never ceases to amaze me that Citigroup finds a way to get in the middle of every banking crisis that comes down the pike. From Latin American debt in the 80s to sub prime today, Citigroup and other banks, always find a way to lend money to folks who can't or won't pay it back. As Buffet put it later in the speech:

"I wouldn't quite call it a credit crunch. Funds are available," Buffett said during a question and answer session at a business event. "Money is available, and it's really quite cheap because of the lowering of rates that has taken place."

He added: "What has happened is a repricing of risk and an unavailability of what I might call 'dumb money,' of which there was plenty around a year ago."

Yep, the dumb money. Why do people keep bailing out these idiots?

No comments: