Bank of America is buying Countrywide Financial – chief instigators of the subprime mess that is wracking the US and World Financial markets. Countrywide according to several reports was on the verge of bankruptcy. Why should Bank of America buy when it could get the same assets in bankruptcy court for pennies on the dollar and no legal liabilities? May be they need Anthony Mozilo.
Anthony Mozilo, the CEO responsible for the subprime mess spouting from Countrywide, according to the NYTimes will be treated very well:
“Mr. Mozilo is expected to remain as chief executive of Countrywide until the deal closes… After that, he would serve on a transition team and would remain with the combined company on an interim basis. He could be entitled to an exit package of roughly $115 million.”
Hello Bank of America – is this avarice for a dominating presence in consumer mortgage markets worth the substantial brand and legal liability risk or “is that under control?” Hello Ayn Rand – is this how the efficient capital markets deal with strong negative CEO performance – rewards malfeasance not just substantially, but royally ? This is just another startling example of no-risk, no liability yet high compensation accorded to top level US executives. Might this explain why in industry after industry, US Executives are taking the easy road? Just consider “energy independence” not delivered, drug-makers using rolling patents and lobbying to jury-rig drug pricing, auto execs choosing the easy SUV/Trucks/Gas Guzzlers over the obvious need for green machines, etc, etc. I need a fifth, I certainly don’t understand the business rationale of the current US executive suite .