How Citigroup is like a Nigerian bank

MARK WILSON/Getty Images David Hale, an economist and chairman of Hale Advisors, had this to say about Citigroup’s recent sale of $7.5 billion worth of stock to Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, which sold at an 11 percent yield:  This is the kind of yield you’d expect from a bank in Nigeria or Kazakhstan. The ...

597883_071130_bernanke_05.jpg
597883_071130_bernanke_05.jpg
WASHINGTON - SEPTEMBER 20: Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson (L) speaks with Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke during a House Financial Services Committee hearing on Capitol Hill September 20, 2007 in Washington DC. The committee is hearing testimony about the problems with mortgage foreclosures. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

MARK WILSON/Getty Images

David Hale, an economist and chairman of Hale Advisors, had this to say about Citigroup's recent sale of $7.5 billion worth of stock to Abu Dhabi's sovereign wealth fund, which sold at an 11 percent yield

This is the kind of yield you'd expect from a bank in Nigeria or Kazakhstan.

MARK WILSON/Getty Images

David Hale, an economist and chairman of Hale Advisors, had this to say about Citigroup’s recent sale of $7.5 billion worth of stock to Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth fund, which sold at an 11 percent yield

This is the kind of yield you’d expect from a bank in Nigeria or Kazakhstan.

The acerbic comment was made at today’s New America Foundation’s event on the U.S. economy.

Hale followed that zinger with an anecdote about how Ben Bernanke’s phone records revealed that the Fed chairman had been on the phone with U.S. Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson dozens of times in August, when the Fed reversed its position and decided to lower interest rates in the face of a worsening credit crisis. As Hale put it, Bernanke called Paulson not only so that the secretary could explain what was going on, but because, as a former Goldman Sachs CEO, Paulson “helped cause it.”

More from Foreign Policy

A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.
A Panzerhaubitze 2000 tank howitzer fires during a mission in Ukraine’s Donetsk region.

Lessons for the Next War

Twelve experts weigh in on how to prevent, deter, and—if necessary—fight the next conflict.

An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.
An illustration showing a torn Russian flag and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

It’s High Time to Prepare for Russia’s Collapse

Not planning for the possibility of disintegration betrays a dangerous lack of imagination.

An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.
An unexploded tail section of a cluster bomb is seen in Ukraine.

Turkey Is Sending Cold War-Era Cluster Bombs to Ukraine

The artillery-fired cluster munitions could be lethal to Russian troops—and Ukrainian civilians.

A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol  January 8, 2009 in Washington.
A joint session of Congress meets to count the Electoral College vote from the 2008 presidential election the House Chamber in the U.S. Capitol January 8, 2009 in Washington.

Congrats, You’re a Member of Congress. Now Listen Up.

Some brief foreign-policy advice for the newest members of the U.S. legislature.