Friday, May 21, 2010

As Congress mulls new financial firm regulations, Wall Street bails out a green Chicago bank with ties to Obama; why?

The Central Illinois 9/12 Project became one of the first to expose — beginning this past March on – Shorebank’s extensive green and microfinancing agendas, in anticipation of that bank’s impending bailout. Shorebank, a Chicago-based, community-based investment bank, is focused on domestic and foreign microfinancing, is heavily engaged in the financing of “green” projects and “green” jobs, and has a host of ties to the Obama and Clinton administrations. Most recently, we wrote in April about Shorebank seeking a “bailout” from larger financial firms that have previously received bailout money from the federal government. Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky had previously proposed that the bank receive funds from the State of Illinois to help cover its loss of capital since the beginning of the nation’s economic downturn in 2008.

As we previously wrote, Shorebank would potentially be eligible for TARP funds if it were to be recognized as a “Community Development Financial Institution.” In order to to receive needed federal TARP money and prevent seizure by the FDIC, Shorebank needed to receive appropriate matching funds from private sources. News stories have been released over the past several days indicating that Shorebank has potentially received such funding.

Shorebank has reportedly received $20 million from General Electric, $20 million from Goldman Sachs, and $20 million from Citigroup – with additional large funds being promised by J.P.Morgan Chase, Bank of America, and Morgan Stanley. Shorebank also has received funds from the Northern Trust Corporation, State Farm, and Harris N.A. It has been reported that the bank could also receive funds from Wells-Fargo and PNC Financial Services. Assistance from these financial institutions puts Shorebank’s raised capital from private sources within the range needed to make it eligible for TARP funds.

As we reported previously, Citigroup, Bank of America, and Chase all received tens of billions of dollars in taxpayer money from TARP. Does this then mean that Shorebank is being bailed out by bailout money?

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