I would point out, first, that although the United States has several thousand banks, only 19 have more than $100 billion of assets, and that after supervisory authorities evaluate their condition, it is likely that few would require further government intervention.

There has been much talk lately about a new resolution process for systemically important firms that Congress could enact, and I would encourage this be implemented as quickly as possible, but we do not have to wait for new authority. We can act immediately, using essentially the same steps we used for Continental.

An extremely large firm that has failed would have to be temporarily operated as a conservatorship or a bridge organization and then reprivatized as quickly as is economically feasible. We cannot simply add more capital without a change in the firm’s ownership and management and expect different outcomes.

You cannot wait until you know for sure the economy is recovering. We will watch every indicator of data that suggests we have a recovery under way.

It is a matter of running your economy properly. When the U.S. does that, and I think we will, I think we will remain the largest, most successful reserve currency on the face of the earth.

— Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President Thomas Hoenig

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