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Fed's Bailout Report Shows Financial Crisis Is Over: Bove

Thursday, 2 Dec 2010 | 12:02 PM ET

The Federal Reserve's report this week on its $3.3 trillion bailout of the global banking system shows that the financial crisis is finally over, banking analyst Dick Bove said.

While the information on who borrowed from the US central bank contained surprises—such as the extent to which European banks had access to the money and that Goldman Sachs was "significantly weaker than anyone knew"—the overview is that the bailout helped save the system, said Bove, of Rochdale Securities.

"The biggest point that one should derive from this information, because what has been revealed now is ancient history, is that the only entity that needs this money any longer is the United States government," he said in a research note to clients entitled "Financial Crisis Is Over."

The various entities involved with the bailouts, including the Fed, the Treasury and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp, have been alternately praised and criticized for the trillions in aid they provided to companies as diverse as investment banker Morgan Stanley and motorcycle giant Harley-Davidson .

At issue in most of the arguments was the urgency to provide the funds.

Companies around the world came under duress as the real estate market collapsed, taking with it the trillions in securities used to underwrite the housing boom and particularly subprime mortgages provided to less-than-qualified buyers.

"After some experimentation, the moves taken by these agencies were extraordinarily successful," Bove wrote. "They stopped a run on American (and European) banking companies and earned what may be $60 billion in profits for the combined entities—a taxpayer windfall of unusually large dimensions."

Bove has been critical of some policy areas since the financial crisis hit—in particular he said the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill would hammer the industry, and he recently signed a petition from leaders in the financial communityasking the Fed to back off its new round of $600 billion in Treasury purchases under its quantitative easing program.

But he also has called the Troubled Asset Relief Program the "most successful US program ever," a stance he reiterated in citing the successes of the plethora of alphabet-soup programs used to support companies during the bailout.

"The private sector programs have been wound down or eliminated," he said. "The Federal Reserve is back to its old game of funding U.S. Treasury debt. The private sector may now be certified as 'healthy.'"

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