Will the present financial crisis become the burden of the taxpayer?
"Former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin called for quick government action to tackle the rising level of home foreclosures and he indicated taxpayer money will have to be used.
`There is a strong need for urgent action,' Rubin, who is chairman of Citigroup Inc.'s executive committee, said. `I would be very, very seriously considering the possibility of using public funds in one form or another.'
The Federal Housing Administration should be involved in any stepped-up government effort to help homeowners facing the loss of their houses, Rubin said an interview on Bloomberg Television's `Political Capital with Al Hunt,' to be aired today. `The piece that's missing now, at least in my judgment, is addressing all of these mortgages that face foreclosure.'
U.S. home-foreclosure filings jumped 60 percent and bank seizures more than doubled in February as rates on adjustable mortgages rose and property owners were unable to sell or refinance amid falling prices. The biggest housing slump in a generation, compounded by tighter credit and mounting financial losses, is spilling over to other industries and pushing the broader economy toward a recession."