September 15, 2019

TARP

GMAC CFO Bolts Two Weeks After TARP Testimony

This story is republished from CFOZone, where you’ll find news, analysis and professional networking tools for finance executives.

Private equity firm Providence Equity Partners announced on Tuesday that it had hired Robert S. Hull, GMAC Financial Services’ chief financial officer.

Hull will join the firm, which specializes in media, entertainment, communications and information companies, as its CFO in early April. He succeeds Raymond Mathieu, who will become a managing director focused on special projects for the firm.


The 46-year-old Hull was CFO at GMAC since 2007. He was a member of the beleaguered lender’s executive committee and served briefly on its board of directors.

Previously, he held a series of finance positions at Bank of America from 2001 to 2007, most recently as chief financial officer of the company’s global wealth and investment management business.

GMAC has received $17 billion in government bailout funds and hasn’t recorded a quarterly profit since the fourth quarter of 2008. Indeed, it has lost money in nine of the last 10 quarters and lost over $10 billion in 2009.

Hull was paid $4.9 million last year.

The departure comes just two weeks after Hull had to testify before a Congressional Oversight Panel regarding the U.S. government’s assistance to GMAC under the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

In a report regarding Hull’s departure, Standard & Poor’s laid out GMAC’s many troubles, which include “resolving strategic considerations for several business lines, most notably the mortgage operation; executing its plans to diversify beyond providing auto-finance products and services to GM and Chrysler dealers and retail customers; and coping with a still-fragile economy.”

Given all those challenges, the rating agency concluded, “it is not surprising to see turnover at all levels of the institution.”

Perhaps that lack of surprise is why GMAC, for its part, didn’t even bother putting out a press release over the departure, opting to make only a two-sentence filing with the SEC:

“GMAC Financial Services today announced that Chief Financial Officer Robert S. Hull has elected to depart the company at the end of March to pursue another career opportunity. The company will conduct an internal and external search for potential CFO candidates in the interim.”

Quote of the Day: Hank Paulson Tells No Lies | 02.09.10

“We will get every penny we put into the banks back. I think when you look at all the other programs, we may be surprised at what we get back.”

~ Hank Paulson, to Warren Buffet on TARP.

New Obama Proposal Would Invest $30 Billion TARP Funds in Small Banks

One can only postulate that since there was no room in President Obama’s bloated 2010 budget for small business initiatives, he instead chose to apply some TARP money that’s just lying around to get small business working again. I wish Mr President the best of luck on that plan as he’ll be needing it.

WSJ:

President Barack Obama proposed a $30 billion small business lending program Tuesday, the latest in a series of administration efforts to jump-start hiring by the nation’s small businesses.

The program, which Mr. Obama detailed at an appearance in Nashua, N.H., would invest $30 billion from the government’s Troubled Asset Relief Program in community banks to encourage them to lend to small businesses. If approved by Congress, the program would incentivize small and midsize banks to provide loans valued at several times that figure.


Didn’t we invest $700 billion in the Too Big to Fail banks for this same purpose? Not that it matters, we’ll try it again with the hopes that community banks will be able to accomplish what TBTF couldn’t.

A proactive sort of administration, White House officials were already prepared to counter the argument that TARP was never intended as a general piggy bank for funding the administration’s whims:

“The law is very clear: The monies recouped from the TARP shall be paid into the general fund of the Treasury for the reduction of the public debt. It’s not for a piggy bank,” [Sen. Judd] Gregg said.

[White House Budget Director Peter] Orszag said new legislation would be required to create the new small-business plan. He said the cost of the plan would depend on the subsidy rate of new activity and wouldn’t amount to a net cost, in terms of the deficit, of $30 billion.

Considering that he’s referring to a deficit of $3.8 trillion, I guess $30 billion isn’t really anything to get stressed out about after all.

Meanwhile, can community banks counter the continued deterioration of commercial real estate weighing on their balance sheets? I guess we’ll have to wait it out and see.

Preliminary Analytics | 12.09.09

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Standard Chartered Sees No ‘Material’ Impairments in Dubai – Let’s remember this for future reference. [WSJ]
Lessons Lost – Gary Weiss links to GC in his remembrance of Enron. Does anyone else remember Enron? [Portfolio]
Obama’s Stimulus II – BO wants to help small business by letting them “eliminate capital gains taxes on the sale of small firms, allow them to continue to expense capital investment, and give them tax breaks for hiring new workers.” Sounds nice but Howard Gleckman says, “It’s a bit like throwing a drowning man a 64-inch flat panel TV. He might love to have one, but not right now.” [Tax Policy Center]
U.S. SEC Sues to Freeze Assets Of ‘Ponzi Scheme’ – Rockford Funding Group LLC, come on down! [DealBook]