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Politico: Yap trap: Pols talk, markets dive 2/24/09 It was a perfectly reasonable question, and on the surface it seemed like a perfectly reasonable answer. But when Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd went on Bloomberg TV Friday and mused about the possibility of bank nationalization, panicked investors sent the Dow plummeting a hundred points in the next hour. Whoops. Dodd’s casual remark and the not-so-casual consequences it caused were among the most vivid examples of a new Washington phenomenon. The city’s sudden status as the de facto world financial capital means that briefings and interviews that once would have passed with a yawn can create instant terror on Wall Street and Main Street alike. [...] “Sen. Dodd’s ‘nationalization’ comment wins the Oscar for most irresponsible remark by a U.S. official,” said Tony Fratto, a financial spokesman at the White House and the Treasury Department during the Bush years. “The last thing markets need is to have officials speculating about hypothetical policy choices.”