U.S. Bancorp plans to expand into the Western portion of the country, CEO Richard Davis said. He predicted that the economy will stay in recession until the middle of 2010. Last month, the bank repaid $6.6 billion in federal rescue money.
Janet Yellen, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, went further than other policymakers in assuring that the Fed is not likely to push its interest rate up in the near future. Speaking to reporters after a speech, she said it is "not outside the realm of possibility" that the central bank will let the interest rate remain close to zero for several years.
The Treasury could make an announcement as early as today on the investment managers it chose to manage funds to buy banks' troubled assets, sources said. The government is expected to name as many as nine firms, more than initially expected, although the size of the program appears to be shrinking.
The Securities and Exchange Commission approved a proposal by a vote of 3-2 that allows broker-dealers to cast votes for corporate directors only when their clients tell them to. "Counting uninstructed broker votes is akin to stuffing the ballot box for management as broker votes almost always are cast in favor of management's candidates for board seats," said Ann Yerger, executive director of the Council of Institutional Investors.
Goldman Sachs appears to be in an odd yet enviable position. The firm, of which shares have nearly doubled since March, will collect its biggest profit if the economic recovery drags on and federal rescue programs stumble. Because many economists forecast those scenarios, Goldman is "well positioned to capitalize on this new world," said David J. Winters, manager of the Wintergreen fund.