Looks like the financial oligarchs are firmly in control of the nation. The FASB relaxed the rules:
The Financial Accounting Standards Board, pressured by U.S. lawmakers and financial companies, voted to relax fair-value rules that Citigroup Inc. and Wells Fargo & Co. say don’t work when markets are inactive.
The changes to so-called mark-to-market accounting allow companies to use “significant” judgment when gauging the price of some investments on their books, including mortgage-backed securities. Analysts say the measure may reduce banks’ writedowns and boost their first-quarter net income by 20 percent or more. FASB voted 3-2 to approve the rules at a meeting today in Norwalk, Connecticut.
In What is Mark-to-Market and Why Should you care, Bill Isaac did imply to ease the rules means less sucking at the taxpayer wallet. While it is clear mark-to-market removes transparency and allows more fictional profits, the biggest story here (since we already wrote about the details in the links), is how the FASB (and Congress) succumbed to lobbyist pressure.
I suspect the score for the national interest regarding the financial crisis is:
Financial Oligarchs 120349558
Regular Citizen 2