September 2009, Dean Baker and Travis McArthur

One outcome of the TARP and other bank rescue efforts following the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September of 2008 is that the United States has essentially formalized a commitment to a “too big to fail” (TBTF) policy for major banks. This paper uses data from the FDIC on the relative cost of funds for TBTF banks and other banks, before and after the crisis, to quantify the value of the government protection provided by the TBTF policy.

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