Tuesday, November 30, 2010

$25 Billion Tarp Costs Way Below Initial Estimates

From the "Report on the Troubled Asset Relief Program—November 2010" prepared by the CBO:
CBO estimates that the cost to the federal government of the TARP's transactions (also referred to as the subsidy cost), including grants that have not been made yet for mortgage programs, will amount to $25 billion (see Table 1). That cost stems largely from assistance to American International Group (AIG), aid to the automotive industry, and grant programs aimed at avoiding foreclosures. Other transactions with financial institutions will, taken together, yield a net gain to the federal government, CBO estimates.

CBO's current estimate of the cost of the TARP's transactions is substantially less than the $66 billion estimate incorporated in the agency's latest baseline budget projections (issued in August 2010) and the $109 billion estimate shown in the agency's previous report on the TARP (issued in March 2010). The reduction in estimated cost over the course of this year stems from several developments: additional repurchases of preferred stock by recipients of TARP funds; a lower estimated cost for assistance to AIG and to the automotive industry; lower expected participation in mortgage programs; and the elimination of the opportunity to use TARP funds for new purposes (because of the passage of time and the provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, P.L. 111-203). CBO's current estimate is also well below OMB's latest estimate, $113 billion, because the market value of assets held by the government has increased and several recipients of TARP funds — most notably General Motors and AIG — have significantly restructured the Treasury’s investment since May 31, 2010, the date used as the basis for OMB's analysis.
The complete report is available from CBO here or on Scribd here or embedded below.

CBO Report on the Troubled Asset Relief Program November 2010

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