Citigroup Needs Help

U.S. Treasury Offers Citigroup Billions.

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To regulate, or not to regulate--that is the question: Whether it is nobler to let the banks suffer a horrible fortune, or to take arms against this sea of debt. Nobilty and rhetoric aside, the U.S. has largely doubled back on its free market philosophies. As the Washington Post reports, the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve, and FDIC announced last night that they will help protect Citigroup--one of the nation's largest banks--against $309 billion of troubled assets. The bank's stock fell 60 percent to $3.77 last week. The government will invest $20 billion in return for $7 billion in preferred shares. Citigroup, as outlined by the conditions of emergency assistance, must adhere to new restrictions on what it can pay its executives and the execution of an FDIC program to prevent home forclosures. This assistance to Citigroup is the most recent wave of government intervetion over the past three months. The years of preaching de-regulation are coming back to hit hard, as debts are high and confidence has evaporated.