By Steve GormanThe American ConservativeIn his State of the Union address last week, President Barack Obama called for banks to be allowed to lend up to five times as much to the country’s largest banks, to offset their costs in the crisis.
But what he didn’t say is that these large banks are far from doing their fair share.
In the meantime, they have been ripping off our economy.
They have spent hundreds of billions of dollars over the past few years to prop up their own bottom lines, often to the detriment of the millions of Americans who rely on their banking services.
These banks are ripping us off and the American people are paying the price.
The Washington Post’s Steve Gogan reports from Washington.
The problem is not limited to big banks.
The nation’s largest credit unions, whose members are mostly small businesses, have been hit hard by the economic crisis.
At the same time, big banks like Citigroup and Bank of America have been spending big to expand their financial assets, while charging high interest rates to make up for the losses.
While they have not been as big as they could have been, these two big banks combined spent more than $1 trillion during the financial crisis on bad loans and acquisitions, according to an analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics.
That includes more than a dozen large banks like JP Morgan Chase and Bank Of America that collectively owe more than one trillion dollars.
That means the total amount of bad loans they have taken on has nearly tripled, from $4 trillion in 2010 to more than twice that today.
These big banks are making money by charging a higher interest rate to make a profit.
But the big problem isn’t just the big bankers, it’s the huge costs they are putting on the country.
According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, these big banks account for more than half of all government spending and nearly all of the federal deficit.
They account for nearly half of the total debt, and have been able to do so without raising taxes.
This is because they have grown so large and because of their aggressive use of leverage.
While there are plenty of big banks that are doing well, the big bank sector is really an outlier.
And it is becoming increasingly clear that it is the very definition of a crisis.
The biggest banks are a small percentage of the $1.3 trillion in total financial assets of the U.S. banking system.
These assets represent about 8 percent of the financial system, according a Center on Policy Priority report.
In the last 10 years, the biggest banks have spent more on loans to the big credit unions than they have on any other type of financial asset.
What is the problem?
The problem stems from a combination of three main factors: The big banks and their financial institutions are profiting from the crisis by overcharging us for the privilege of doing business with them; the big financial institutions that make up this industry are abusing their leverage to make us pay higher interest rates; and the big Wall Street banks are spending billions of dollar to buy back their own businesses and to buy out smaller companies that they have no business hurting.
The big banks should be doing all they can to make the financial systems more efficient, and not ripping us out of the system.
But it is not just the banks that have taken advantage of the crisis: The federal government is too.
As we have reported here at The American Conservatives, big government has been spending a lot of money to bail out the financial sector and the rest of the economy during the economic meltdown.
These bailouts were mostly paid for by the taxpayer, but they have hurt the economy by driving up the cost of credit and putting a drag on wages and salaries.
The bailout of big financial firms also increased the federal debt, which now stands at more than 4 percent of GDP.
The bailouts also created a new class of financial customers who were never really customers of banks.
They were never going to pay high interest or the high costs associated with borrowing, so they were never in the business of investing in America.
They bought into a company that has no real competitive advantage over other companies in the marketplace.
In short, the banks made the big companies more profitable.
And the big government bailout also made the banks richer.
Big banks got the big tax breaks while the rest got the losses from taxpayers.
The big government bailouts and the bailouts of banks have resulted in trillions of dollars of lost revenue for the government, as well as trillions of more dollars in lost business for the banks.
Big banks, which have been so successful in making money off our economic woes, now need to make our financial systems less risky, and that means doing everything possible to make sure we don’t have a financial crisis again.
That means making it easier for consumers to buy their own homes, or putting a cap on the amount of debt a consumer can own.
It means ensuring that our big banks can’t buy up companies that are