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Bailout Oversight Lacking, GAO Says
Key Excerpts from Article on Website of Washington Post

Washington Post, December 3, 2008
Posted: December 5th, 2008

The Bush administration has failed to adequately oversee its $700 billion bailout program and must move rapidly to guarantee that banks are complying with the plan's limits on conflicts of interest and lavish executive compensation, congressional investigators said yesterday. The new report by the Government Accountability Office, the nonpartisan investigative arm of Congress, said the Treasury Department has yet to impose necessary safeguards or decide how to determine whether the program is achieving its goals. The auditors said it was too soon for them to tell whether the bailout was working. "The rapid pace of implementation and evolving nature of the program have hampered efforts to put a comprehensive system of internal control in place," the report said. "Until such a system is fully developed and implemented, there is heightened risk that the interests of the government and taxpayers may not be adequately protected and that the program objectives may not be achieved in an efficient and effective manner." So far, the rescue package has provided at least $150 billion in capital infusions to 52 financial institutions, the auditors said. They added that no applications for funding were denied by the Treasury. The congressional auditors urged Treasury officials to determine how each bank receiving bailout money is using the money and whether they are using it in a way consistent with the intent of the law. Several congressional leaders have criticized financial firms for hoarding the money instead of using it to lend to borrowers.

Note: For many revealing reports on the Wall Street bailout from reliable sources, click here.

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