Daily Archives: May 11, 2009

John Gapper

I have some small insight into Barack Obama’s well-received comic speech to the White House Correspondents Dinner in Washington on Saturday night since I was there. More specifically, I was sitting near Larry Summers, who is director of the Council of Economic Advisers, when he was singled out by Mr Obama.

The general practice is that news organisations invite outsiders to join them and, while some go for Hollywood stars, the FT tends to be rather serious and invite business executives and officials. So he was at one our our tables. Read more

John Gapper

Well, it looks as if I was wrong about one thing in my column on capital ratios last week – tangible common equity is not the new tier 1 capital after all, at least as far as the Federal Reserve goes. The Fed prefers something called tier 1 common.

I do not pretend fully to understand the difference – both tangible common equity and tier 1 common equity are a tighter measure of capital strength than tier 1, which was originally adopted in the 1988 Basel Accord. However, tier 1 common is a bit looser than tangible common. Read more