But bailout did not happen. What did happen is what experts had been predicting for the last 20 years, but it happened in the space of a couple of weeks. Now Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase and Citigroup own more than 30% of the bank deposits. This will presumably kill off more banks as there was an actual 'ban' since 1995 that prevented giants like Citigroup from making acquisitions. Now it seems the 'ban' has disappeared.
Citigroup recently bought out Wachovia. As you may realize, Wachovia opened a branch in Dhaka, Bangladesh just a couple months back. Now Citibank NA owns it. I guess Mamun Rashid can rightly strutt in and out of Wachovia now. Its his bounty after all.
Daat-majun did happen (see picture). Our favoriate politician wannabe/shud khor (I am not that fluent in Bangla, but does it translate to interest pimp? If it does Zindegi! Zindegi!)/banker to the poor, was at the Clinton Global Initiative. Yes I was there. But Yunus reiterated in front of a dreamy democrat crowd that US banks should lend more to the poor, considering that we are in this mess, because banks lent to the poor in the first place.
Our professor mentioned that Grameenbank has a 98% recovery rate only in Bangladesh. CEO's of Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and BoA listened attentively and the Wall Street recovered realizing the wisdom in Yunus's words. Poverty was eliminated precisely 2 minutes later. Yunus's next book is rumored to be called "Mr. 98 Percent: using NGO tactics for loan recovery". Fazle Abed is co-authoring the book.
Back to Bangladesh from your daydream. Banks now. Only in Bangladesh, banks don't seem to die or merge. Remember Al Baraka, Oriental and ICB Islamic Bank? It has 9 lives even though it should be dead long time ago. But just recently an organization that specializes in buying sick/under-par/"crap" banks decided to buy it out of the clutches of Bangladesh Bank. The ICB group, which bought the bank, is also known to operate a large string of third-world, hand-me-down banks across Africa and Eastern Europe. Although BASEL II (which I know nothing about other than it requires banks pin down a huge amount of money) might actually kill ICB fruition. Did I also mention ICB is an 'Islamic' bank? Because only in Bangladesh if your normal operations don't succeed, labelling it Islamic may do the trick.
Secondly for the first time ever, BTRC is charging for spectrum. This was a shock to our telecom sector as 'only in Bangladesh' did these companies get huge amounts for free. But Grameenphone, Banglalink and AKtel are the only ones that got a piece.
Anders Jensen just confirmed what we have been suspecting all along as the reason for his resignation. His family. Not VoIP, tumbling of profits, failure of the IPO or not adding a single customer in August. Rumors are that Anders Jensen is going to be replaced by a Bangladeshi sock puppet to satisfy Yunus. Expect more conversations on a per-minute basis (not with VoIP obviously) with Arse Norbor.
Also Happy Eid from everyone.