Tags: Forbes | Obama | Bank | Tax

Steve Forbes: Obama's Bank Tax Is a Waste

By Dan Weil   |   Tuesday, 19 Jan 2010 03:41 PM

Steve Forbes, publisher of Forbes magazine, says President Barack Obama’s proposed tax on banks that received bailout assistance is a waste.

“Any tax right now hurts the economy,” he says.

“Any tax on the financial system is going to hurt the economy. Taxes aren’t going to dig us out of this hole,” he recently told CNBC.

So what is the answer?

“Asset appreciation will dig us out of this hole and reforming healthcare and Medicaid and Medicare, not the government takeover of such,” Forbes said.

He said the focus on bankers’ compensation is misguided.

“The real cause of the crisis, . . . which Ben Bernanke would like to wash his hands of, is the Federal Reserve printing too much money,” Forbes maintains.

“If it hadn’t printed that money, you couldn’t have had a bubble. When it prints too much money, it’s going to flow and have disastrous impact.”

So instead of grilling bank executives over the crisis, Congress should question Bernanke and former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan, Forbes said.

And after that, “They should have brought in Fannie (Mae) and Freddie (Mac),” he said. “Those two entities issued $1.5 trillion of junk mortgages.”

Superstar bank analyst Meredith Whitney agrees with Forbes on the bank tax.

“The irony is it hurts the weaker banks more than the stronger banks,” she told The New York Times.

“To think that it won’t come out of consumers and businesses is mistaken.”

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Steve Forbes, publisher of Forbes magazine, says President Barack Obama s proposed tax on banks that received bailout assistance is a waste. Any tax right now hurts the economy, he says. Any tax on the financial system is going to hurt the economy. Taxes aren t going...
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