OLD Media Moves

Bloomberg vs. the Feds

February 15, 2010

Alan Feuer of the New York Times writes about the pending litigation between Bloomberg News and the federal government seeking the release of documents related to the bailout of several firms during the recent economic crisis.

Feuer writes, “One of the abiding oddities of the case is that, after 16 months of litigation, it may change precedent but have little effect on the situation that prompted it. In May 2008, when Mr. Pittman first requested the documents, information about who got money from the Fed (and if they got it despite less than stellar collateral) could have, as the saying goes, moved markets. Now, with the passage of time, that seems less likely.

“In that respect, at least, the case has become a principled grudge match. The Clearing House has accused Bloomberg News of wanting the information in order to describe a pointless and divisive horse race between strong banks and weak banks, adding that the information itself, if given out by, say, a bank employee, would quickly bring the F.B.I. to his door. Bloomberg, in turn, has said that it wants the information because getting information is what the news media does, and has accused the Fed of dragging out the process so long that the documents will no longer be of interest.

“The Fed, meanwhile, has worried that if the appeals court rules for Bloomberg, then savvy traders could quickly get their hands on such data in the future and use it to their advantage even as the government was trying to stabilize the markets.”

Read more here.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry daily or weekly.

Subscribe to TBN

Receive updates about new stories in the industry.