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Declarations

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Fed role

“It is clear that the government has got to step in.”

U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass., chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, supporting a national program to backup private hurricane and flood insurance markets.

Sponged-off

“It is more than ironic that two working class sponges are named Bob. Both characters are unemployed. Both characters live in a house concept.”

Troy Walker claiming that he created Bob Spongee, an unemployed cartoon sponge who lived with his family on Apple street, in 1991, upon which he claims Nickelodeon based its popular “Sponge Bob Square Pants.” Walker has filed a lawsuit against Nickelodeon, demanding $1.6 billion in damages, and alleging they used his idea without his permission. Walker claims to have made 1,000 Bob Spongee dolls, which he sold throughout northern California, and which he believes inspired the producers of the show to duplicate his character.

Bank withdrawal

“Since the approval process is now likely to take years rather than months, we decided to withdraw our application to better focus on other ways to serve customers.”

Wal-Mart President Jane Thompson explaining why her firm withdrew its application to start its own bank, which it first filed in 2005, rather than wait any longer: The retailer is one among 14 companies with applications before the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to establish industrial loan corporations, or ILCs.

Reform progress

“Competition is working for consumers and it will continue to work if reforms are allowed to progress.”

Hank Nayden, a Geico vice president, after a New Jersey Senate committee killed a proposal to make it illegal for auto insurers to use a driver’s job and education to decide rates. The defeat came after a Gov. Jon S. Corzine and insurers argued the bill would impair competition and drive up rates.

WTC rally

“The insurers will fight tooth and nail to avoid paying legitimate debts. We will not stand by while they duck their obligations to New York and this nation.”

World Trade Center developer Larry Silverstein who rallied with construction workers to protest stalled payments by two insurers, saying their failure to pay is jeopardizing ground zero rebuilding. Silverstein, Port Authority executives, lawmakers and labor leaders rallied outside a National Association of Insurance Commissioners meeting, claiming insurers Allianz and Royal & Sun Alliance UK are delaying rebuilding. They maintain Allianz and Royal owe about $800 million.


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