Bank of America appears too big to function
The struggle to find a replacement for Ken Lewis suggests the company is too complex.
By Glenn Hall, TheStreet.com
Bank of America's failure to find a CEO suggests that the bank really is too large and too complicated to function.
Apparently, some of the CEO prospects have said that very thing -- to their detriment. At least two candidates have been rejected for suggesting that Bank of America needs to be downsized, according to the Wall Street Journal. Bank of America's board apparently wants a Ken Lewis clone.
Maybe the board should consult with its government overseers for some clarification on this point, considering how things have gone for Lewis.
The way this is playing out, it seems like the Bank of America board is playing a guessing game with the administration. It's easy to imagine Board Chairman Walter Massey calling Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and asking: "How about this guy? No? OK, how about this other guy? No? OK, I'll get back to you in a few more weeks."
Maybe the Obama administration should abandon this farce of a CEO selection process, announce who it wants and get on with it.
Considering all the banks the Treasury Department de facto controls through the TARP program -- including big names like Citigroup and Wells Fargo -- the government shouldn't have any trouble finding someone with enough qualifications to follow orders and dismantle the bank.
And if that's not what the Obama administration wants, then let's hear it from the president or Treasury secretary pronto.
The longer this drags out, the more feeble and dysfunctional the board appears, which fuels the argument for dismantling Bank of America.
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