- The Washington Times - Friday, March 20, 2009

NEW YORK (AP) - Stocks are fluctuating as investors examine Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s calls for banking supervisors to pay “close attention” to compensation practices.

Bernanke says regulators have observed that “poorly designed compensation policies can create perverse incentives that can ultimately jeopardize the health of the banking organization.”

His prepared remarks are for a speech at a bank conference in Phoenix, Ariz.

The Fed jolted the market this week by announcing plans to buy Treasury securities to revive lending and the economy. Stocks initially jumped on the move but fell Thursday on worries about inflation.

In midday trading, the Dow is up 4 points at 7,405. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index is down 3 at 781, while the Nasdaq composite index is down 5 at 1,478.

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