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It’s been 13 long months since the credit crisis was unleashed by a spate of subprime defaults and still no end in site. Of course, the lending fiasco has spread well beyond subprime to other types of residential and commercial loans as well as various corporate transactions. Financial institutions have very little money to lend while it appears cleaning up their balance sheets may take considerably more time. It’s a delicate balancing act. If they could find all the dreck and recognize all the losses at one time, many banks could crater. If regulators push banks too hard they may create greater fears and more problems. The Fed has had a tough enough time keeping Freddie and Fannie above water while hoping a big money center institution doesn’t go sideways on them like Bear Stearns. And Ben Bernanke may be running out of fingers to plug all the holes in the dikes.

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