Obama asks bankers to decrease spending, increase lending

At a White House meeting with the CEOs of the largest banks in the U.S., President Barack Obama said bankers need to understand the public outcry over the financial crisis and the bonuses from banks receiving state aid. He noted that banks play a critical role in economic growth and said he wants to shore up the industry. For their part, the bankers emphasized the importance of government backing to enable them to boost lending. Bankers and industry group representatives were optimistic. "We look forward to working with the administration," said James Rohr, chief executive of PNC.

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