Former Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner had discussions—and presumably offers—from some of the biggest and best known firms on Wall Street. So why did he end up with the low-profile private equity firm Warburg-Pincus?
A person familiar with his thinking said among the reasons was that Geithner specifically did not want to work for a company that he either directly or indirectly regulated at the Treasury or the Fed. He is said to have been concerned with worsening the perception of mistrust that many Americans feel toward government and Wall Street.
Geithner, who headed the New York Federal Reserve Bank from 2003 to 2009, was a principal architect of the controversial bailouts of Bear Stearns and the insurance giant American International Group. As Treasury secretary, he administered the Troubled Asset Relief Program and helped develop the Dodd-Frank banking reform laws.
(Read more: Why Tim Geithner's critics have it all wrong)
The source said he also did not want to be involved in some of the short-term economic analysis that would have drawn on his experience at Treasury and the Fed. Private equity tends to be involved in longer-term investment decisions and less focused on whether the Fed will taper its quantitative easing purchases next month.