The Obama administration saved all the big banks, without conditions back in March-April 2009. The too big to fail in the eyes of his administration and the credit markets seemed to be the plausible approach.
Fast forward to today, where the large institutions have gotten bigger, is there a way to significantly reduce the risks posed by these institutions without breaking them up?
- Glass-Steagall was enacted in 1933 to control speculation and not allow banks to own other financial institutions. In 1999 under the Clinton administration this act was repealed, and today we are witnessing the lion share of the profits coming from the trading desks of these financial institutions.
The top 5 bank institutions control 30.7% of all deposits according to the latest FDIC summary dated June 2009. Bank of America leads with over $900 Billion in deposits, making it larger than ALL the Credit Unions combined in the US.
Is breaking up hard to do?
Consider this statement.
I believe that banking institutions are more dangerous to our liberties than standing armies. If the American people ever allow private banks to control the issue of their currency, first by inflation, then by deflation, the banks and corporations that will grow up around [the banks] will deprive the people of all property until their children wake-up homeless on the continent their fathers conquered. The issuing power should be taken from the banks and restored to the people, to whom it properly belongs.
Thomas Jefferson, (Attributed)
3rd president of US (1743 – 1826)