Timmy’s Telephone Travesty


Simon Johnson
The Daily Beast
October 10, 2009

[efoods]New revelations about Tim Geithner’s phone records show an appallingly small Wall Street circle. With a probe likely, Simon Johnson says the Treasury secretary needs a bailout—from Larry Summers.

Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner faces a major public-relations problem. His phone records and broader calendar, obtained by the Associated Press, indicate that most of his contacts with the financial sector in the first seven months of this year were in fact with just three mega-banks: Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, and J.P. Morgan Chase.

While such skewed access to a top policymaker would raise eyebrows at any time, this disclosure is particularly difficult for Geithner. He is known to have deep contacts with a small number of banks, partly from his time at the New York Fed (as reported by The New York Times in April) and partly from his mentor, Robert Rubin, formerly of Goldman and Citi.

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