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View Full Version : Sometimes (mos of the time?) the media grossly distorts its reporting



peb
12-02-2010, 11:45 AM
Well, as most of you know, I like to keep my finger on the pulse of the financial markets, economy, etc. The reporting of recent Fedreal Reserve disclosures about finacial bailouts in 2008 seem to be a glaring case of poor journalism.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/01/AR2010120106870.html

This article talks about federal reserve providing aid to firms such as catepillar and GE and other firms which are not finacial institutions. This is supposed to be new information. BS. The commercial paper market seized up in october of 2008 and the federal reserve made no bones about the fact that they were becoming large buyers of commercial paper n order to keep the economy going. All types of industries use commercial paper to fund short term operations, so why would anyone think this is new information at this time? It is not, and it being reported as so is deceptive at best.
I will also add the example companies, ie catepillar and GE (I am sure john deere would be another one) are large users of commercial paper to fund their customer financing activities. All of these firms have large financial arms because so many of their customers buy on payment plans and/or leases.

Why is this being presented as such new information?

Phillip Allen
12-02-2010, 11:49 AM
Uh...cause nobody got raped or stabbed today?

Ian McColgin
12-02-2010, 12:02 PM
What's new, and legitimately new, is a public ability to see it all in one place. That's what it's a deal even to people like Sen Sanders, who are generally up on it. That said, while I've no reason to doubt that individual observers knew or suspected at least part of this picture in 2008, I can't recall any of them raising the point here, at least not in these exact terms.

So, it really is news now that we can see exactly how the Fed, revered on the right until just recently, has been up to -- to see that history did not begin in 2010. Good thing. Thank you for posting an informative story.

peb
12-02-2010, 12:06 PM
No question the detail is news. Its the presentation of it. Anyone who knew what commercial paper is, knew who used it, and knew that the market for it had totally seized, would have guessed all of these firms. It should not be reported now the way it is. Certainly it is good the actual numbers are making the light of day, but the idea that it is really new information at a basic level is crap. Sanders seems to be either a) grandstanding or b) really ignorant of what all the news meant 2 years ago.

Keith Wilson
12-02-2010, 08:14 PM
Why is this being presented as such new information?Because the folks writing the stories either don't understand that it isn't, or because they have a very strong interest in making everything they write about sound as newsworthy as they can, or both. 'Twas ever thus.

Mark Twain on his days as a reporter in San Francisco: "We raked the town from end to end, gathering such material as we might, wherewith to fill our required columns--and if there were no fires to report, we started some."

Ian McColgin
12-02-2010, 08:44 PM
All I'm saying is that I'm like the news folk - these specifics are news to me. Sure in 2008 even not too astute observers like myself saw a general outline. But I had not these particulars then. More to the point, I may have forgotten but today I cannot recall anyone in this forum that covers so much so well and often presceintly mentioning these details in 2008. Correct me with a citation if I'm wrong. Otherwise, try not to be so supercilliously smug.