I have a sneaking suspicion Ken Lewis is getting screwed. A New York AG picking on a high profile guy who doesn't attend the same c***tail parties.
I personally think Lewis (and the rest of the "Wall Street Fat Cats" - God I hate that phrase) was forced into the deal and the "bailout" by the US Govt, and they are going to use him as the fall guy. How do you defend yourself against them? They can completely bury. His best chance is to just take the beating and walk off into the sunset.
Cuomo's just running for governor or senate and following the lead of his role model, the great Elliot Spitzer.
The thing that really sucks here is that in the next financial crisis, the government will have no ability to use "moral suasion" and no one will be prepared to fall on their sword for the country.
Irony is, ML was probably a good deal for BAC shareholders long term.
Why are we giving any of these guys a pass.... They all deserve some kind of beating... Lewis, Mozilo, Thain, O'neal, nobody at WAMU, etc....
I don't care if they make Lewis the poster boy... he took over 2 bad companies knowing the federal gov't would bail him out...tar him...
Of course the ML deal will be good for BAC, they purchased a company they couldn't afford and had the gov't pick up the tab..
The exception I see is JPM and Goldman...both firms had to take bailouts or the rest of the industry would look even crappier than they did..