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May 23, 2012

The Modest Worth of Big Banks

What can we afford to do about the financial industry?

Jamie Dimon of JPMorgan Chase would have us believe that regulators’ attempts to clip the wings of financial companies are about as misguided as trying to curb spam by shutting down the Internet. To most Americans, a financial crisis that lopped $19.2 trillion off household wealth and produced the deepest recession since the 1930s may be reason enough to limit what financial institutions can do. Andrew G. Haldane, executive director for financial stability at the Bank of England, estimates that the crisis wiped out one to 3.5 years’ worth of the world’s economic output, in present value.

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