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Insurers Can Help Treasury Run Bailout

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The U.S. Treasury Department wants to hire financial institutions – including big insurers – to help it manage portfolios of whole loans and troubled mortgage-related securities, and to provide custodian, accounting and auction management services for mortgage-related assets.

Treasury has posted “financial institutions wanted” notices on the Web.

In addition to insurers, “financial institutions” eligible to apply to help Treasury managed troubled assets could include banks, savings associations, credit unions, or security brokers or dealers.

The deadline for responses is 5 p.m. Wednesday, and bidders must be prepared to begin providing services Saturday.

The bidders for the securities contract must have at least $100 billion in dollar-denominated fixed income assets under management.

Bidders for the custodial services contracts must have at least $500 billion in domestic assets under custody.

Bidders for the whole loan contract must be managing a portfolio of at least $25 billion in mortgage loans, or give other evidence that they can handle a giant mortgage loan portfolio.

Bidders also must be “established and regulated under the laws of the United States or any state, territory, or possession of the United States,” officials write in the Web notices.

Central banks and institutions owned by foreign governments cannot bid for the asset management contracts.

Bidders also cannot be on the federal debarment or suspension lists, may not be delinquent on any debts owed to the government, and may not be subject to any pending or current enforcement actions or regulatory investigations.

The bidders “must covenant to disclose all potential conflicts of interest, and to avoid, mitigate, or neutralize to the extent feasible and to the Treasury’s satisfaction any personal or organizational conflicts of interest that may be identified by the Treasury or the financial institution,” officials write.


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