Obama to announce Tarp fee on banks

US President Barack Obama will unveil details of a fee on the country's top financial firms on Thursday designed to recoup losses from an emergency bank bailout fund that used taxpayer money, a senior administration official said on Tuesday.

The official said that the amount of money raised from the fee would not top $120 billion, as this was the higher end of conservative estimates of the cost of the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or Tarp.

US Treasury officials expect Tarp losses to be much lower than that sum, and over the course of years the fee will pay back any costs of the $700 billion emergency bailout, the Obama administration official said.

The official said that the proposal had been under discussion since August, and that Obama felt it was important to discuss ways to make sure taxpayers got all the money back more quickly than was required under the law.

A number of big US banks have already repaid the capital that they received under Tarp, created by the previous administration of Republican President George W Bush to shore up the financial system during a global crisis of confidence.

 

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