Thursday, September 25, 2008

I still like my plan: the federal government as investor of last resort

Any company may value itself at 50% of its lowest market price from January 1, 2008 until the date of the valuation. The company may then issue new stock—thereby diluting the existing stock. The government would buy the new stock as if it were a venture capitalist investing in the company at the 50%-under-market-price valuation.

This would allow companies to keep whatever they have on their books for as long as they like, thereby relieving pressure on the mortgage-backed-securities market and allowing it to find a true hold-to-maturity price.

This would also give the Federal government—and the taxpayer—an opportunity to invest in the US economy. Bush has claimed that we should invest our social security funds in the stock market. Here's his chance. We would be investing at 50% off a reduced price. What could be better? If things get better, perhaps the government will make enough money that it will be able to reduce taxes.

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