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Biden On Banking System, China Trade

Vice President Joseph Biden said Thursday in an interview on CNBC, that "all alternatives" are under consideration to stabilize the shattered banking system if the expenditure of the second half of a $700 billion financial rescue fund is not adequate to do the job.

Vice President Joseph Biden
AP
Vice President Joseph Biden

Asked whether the White House would establish a "bad bank" to absorb tainted assets clogging banks' balance sheets, Biden said the administration would focus first on productive use of the second half of the rescue fund.

"Once we do that and see whether we can get this system kick-started, the credit system flowing more, that's when we'll make the judgment whether or not anything else is necessary," he said.

"Now, I would be lying to you if I didn't tell you (Treasury) Secretary (Timothy) Geithner ... is, I'm sure, I hope, he is considering all alternatives," Biden said.

As for China, Biden said the United States will insist China play by international trade rules, but will not move unilaterally to keep out China's exports.

"The policy of this administration is to say to China—which occasionally the last administration was reluctant to do—'you're a major player on the world scene economically and you've got to play by the rules that everybody else plays by,"' Biden said.

"'Not more stringent. We're not going to impose on you, or attempt to impose on you, restraints that benefit our economy inconsistent with international trade agreements that exist,"' Biden said.

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