Bloomberg journalists distort the truth
On November 10, 2008 the following story appeared on the Bloomberg website:
Fed Defies Transparency Aim in Refusal to Disclose
The article was written by Bob Ivry and Mark Pittman of Bloomberg. In the story these claims were made:
"The Federal Reserve is refusing to identify the recipients of almost $2 trillion of emergency loans from American taxpayers or the troubled assets the central bank is accepting as collateral."
“The collateral is not being adequately disclosed, and that's a big problem,'' said Dan Fuss, vice chairman of Boston- based Loomis Sayles & Co.,"
"The Fed's collateral “absolutely should be made public,'' said Mark Cuban, an activist investor, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks professional basketball team and the creator of the Web site BailoutSleuth.com, which focuses on the secrecy shrouding the Fed's moves. "
It also said that Bloomberg was suing the Fed under the Freedom of Information Act.
In an email exchange that day between myself and Bob Ivry I stated:
“The Fed is not limiting transparency in its actions. All this information is publicly available. The list can be found at the Fed’s Discount Window of Marginable Collateral. http://www.frbdiscountwindow.org/discountmargins.xls”
“All this information is publicly available. Your research and assertions are incorrect and misleading and you should publish a retraction with the proper information.”
In another email exchange between Mr. Ivry and myself that occurred yesterday, Ivry admits:
“The types of assets aren't hidden. Their value is.”
“…do you trust the government web site to tell you what's going on? I don't”
In the first sentence he admits all along that the assets pledged as collateral “aren’t hidden,” directly contradicting what was stated in the Nov 10 story.
In the second sentence he states his opinion, which is that he doesn’t trust the government to tell the truth.
Therefore the story was based on Mr. Ivry’s opinion about what the government discloses and what it doesn’t disclose; yet that was never indicated. Instead it is written to suggest that the Fed is deliberately keeping information from the public, which it is not, as Mr. Ivry himself admits.