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There's a dream keeps returning, like rain to the sea.
There's a fire ever burning in the souls of the free.
There's a lifetime of learning that it's all been in jest.
And at the end of your journey, it's like you never left.
~ Dave Mason
Those lyrics are great. They apply to a lot of things in life.
That includes me seeing the legendary Traffic singer/songwriter and guitarist Dave Mason, after last seeing him 10 years ago.
He was once again at The Stephen Talkhouse in Amagansett, New York. I saw him with some old friends two weeks ago.
Besides being a legend, he's a really good man.
He's supporting Wounded Warriors and other projects, like Work Vessels for Veterans, which helps support veteran entrepreneurs trying to get their business dreams off the ground.
I urge you all to contribute and to help the incredibly brave men and women in our armed forces who sacrifice so much and get so little in return.
But I digress… although it is for a good cause. We can never do enough for our troops!
There's another dream that's returning today. And it is one that many of you have been actively dreaming about.
It's the return of Glass-Steagall.
Like rain to the sea, the fallout from the implosion of too-big-to-fail banks that poisoned our capital markets and economy may, God willing, help resurrect the Depression-era legislation that separated commercial banks from investment banks.
I've been calling for that for years now. And almost all of you are soldiering with me in that camp.
Well, it seems we may now have a new general to lead us.
Take a look…
Sandy Weill, the architect of TBTF behemoth Citicorp, and the former lieutenant general leading the charge to wipe out the last remnants of Glass-Steagall in 1999, just made an unbelievable about-face.
On CNBC last Wednesday, Weill made headlines when, as a guest host he said that while he was right in 1999, things have proven that he's not right any more, and commercial banks and investment banks should be separated.
In no uncertain terms, he's advocating the resurrection of Glass-Steagall. Hallelujah!
He's not the first of the old guard that once pushed a future full of giant supermarket banks, also known as "universal" banks, to rethink where that's gotten us.
John Reed, the former chairman and CEO of Citibank – before it was merged into Sandy Weill's Travelers giant insurance conglomerate that owned Salomon Smith Barney to create Citicorp – spoke out in 2009. So did Phillip Purcell, the former chief executive of Morgan Stanley, and David Komansky, the former head honcho at Merrill Lynch. It seems that these former "bigger-is-better" banking legends are second-guessing their vision of a boundaryless future of banks without borders.
Our new general has singlehandedly changed the dialogue by bringing the past into focus and honestly calling out the deregulators to admit they were wrong, as he was.
That is leadership.
Who cares about the past? So what if he was at the forefront of the TBTF movement? He's seen the error of his ways, and we all need to thank him for his honesty and for saying exactly what he said, which was that, "creativity, ingenuity and brainpower of the people (bankers) is much more important than size."
With regard to what I believe is the greatest problem facing the U.S. right now, the public's lack of confidence in our capital markets and banks, Weill said this: "By creating an environment where we can attract the kinds of people to be leaders, the system would create leadership again in American financial institutions," and "they'd do a helluva lot better than the ones that just have big balance sheets; and that's always been the case."
Now, that's a dream worth returning to.
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About the Author
Shah Gilani is Chief Financial Strategist for Money Map Press and boasts a financial pedigree unlike any other. He ran his first hedge fund in 1982 from his seat on the floor of the Chicago Board Options Exchange. When options on the Standard & Poor's 100 began trading on March 11, 1983, Shah worked in "the pit" as a market maker. The work he did laid the foundation for what would later become the Volatility Index (VIX) - to this day one of the most widely used indicators worldwide. After leaving Chicago to run the futures and options division of the British banking giant Lloyd's TSB, Shah moved up to Roosevelt & Cross Inc., an old-line New York boutique firm. There he originated and ran a packaged fixed-income trading desk and established that company's "listed" and OTC trading desks. Shah founded a second hedge fund in 1999, which he ran until 2003. Shah's vast network of contacts includes the biggest players on Wall Street and in international finance. These contacts give him the real story - when others only get what the investment banks want them to see. On top of the free newsletter, as editor of The 10X Trader, Money Map Report and Straight Line Profits, Shah presents his legion of subscribers with the chance to earn ten times their money on trade after trade using a little-known strategy. Shah is a frequent guest on CNBC, Forbes, and MarketWatch, and you can catch him every week on FOX Business' "Varney & Co."