When former investment banker David N. Miller was the U.S. Treasury Department’s chief investment officer of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (the fancy name for the mortgage industry bailout) he said he “always wanted to go into public service” and thought his next job would be “quieter” and not as ‘consequential.”
A new article from The New York Times has me thinking otherwise. On the heels of negotiating bailout deals that saw the government barely break even while mortgage lenders were coddled, Mr. Miller is now negotiating a profit for himself from the foreclosed home loans (aka the Troubled Assets) he was tasked with helping the banks get relief from.
Today The New York Times reported that Miller is part of Silver Bay Realty Trust of Minnetonka, Minn. Silver Bay is buying up thousands of foreclosed homes across the nation with the intent of renting them or selling them for a profit.
Ethical questions aside, Miller might have been of greater public service if he had been more enthusiastic about helping those homeowners save their homes in the first place, instead of merely slapping his colleagues’ hands and taking advantage of homeowners’ losses.