If only we had elected officials here with the same kind of gumption Italian politicians have. It seems Jefferson County wasn't the only place where Wall Street banks pitched municipal bond-based derivatives. In Milan, prosecutors have accused JPMorgan Chase, UBS, Deutsche Bank and Depfa of duping the city with interest rate swaps on its $2.2 billion of debt.
In fact, those swaps did not save the city any money at all and in hindsight seem created to gin up fees for the bankers involved. Sound familiar? It should. However, here's where Milan's path diverges from Jefferson County: Officials there have reacted by seizing about $300 million of the banks assets. (Source: New York Times.)