March 12, 2008
Spitzer's Legacy on Wall St.
What will be Governor Spitzer's legacy as the crusading Attorney General? Did he accomplish meaningful reforms in the Global Settlement and market-timing investigations, or was it all for show? The Wall St. Journal quotes Professor Tamar Frankel, at Boston University Law School: "Whether for his own purposes or not, he was the one that put the brakes on" and "stopped the slippery slope" that many in the financial-services industry were operating under around the turn of the century. (For my own assessment of the Global Settlement, see Are Retail Investors Better Off Today?) Even many of Spitzer's supporters believe he may have gone too far in his campaigns against NYSE's Dick Grasso and AIG's Maurice Greenberg. And, of course, if you act self-righteous, you actually have to be holier-than-thou. WSJ, Debate Continues on Whether Wall Street Changes Have Aided Investors.
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