Bloomberg News has sued the federal government demanding that Treasury chief Henry Paulson disclose the names of the banks and other companies that are receiving emergency loans.
Bloomberg reported on Monday: “The Federal Reserve is refusing to identify the recipients of almost $2 trillion of emergency loans from American taxpayers or the troubled assets the central bank is accepting as collateral.
“Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson said in September they would comply with congressional demands for transparency in a $700 billion bailout of the banking system. Two months later, as the Fed lends far more than that in separate rescue programs that didn't require approval by Congress, Americans have no idea where their money is going or what securities the banks are pledging in return.
“Bloomberg News has requested details of the Fed lending under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act and filed a federal lawsuit Nov. 7 seeking to force disclosure.”
Michelle Smith, a spokeswoman for the Federal Reserve — the actual target of the lawsuit — declined to comment on the loans or the Bloomberg suit.
Matthew Winkler, editor-in-chief of Bloomberg News, said: “The American taxpayer is entitled to know the risks, costs and methodology associated with the unprecedented government bailout of the U.S. financial industry.”
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