You may have read about Sen. John Fetterman’s inability to ask a question at the Senate Banking Committee hearing on Tuesday. That was not the case with Sen. John Kennedy (R-LA).
Silicon Valley Bank CEO Greg Becker testified before the Committee, and he didn’t accept a lot of the responsibility for the failure. He blamed everything and everyone else but himself.
Kennedy had enough of his shenanigans and went to town on him, raking him over the coals for his “stupid decisions,” failing to account for the risk.
“You didn’t have hedges, did you?” Kennedy inquired.
Becker tried to say that wasn’t his area of knowledge at the company. But he’s the CEO, so Kennedy shot back, “You’re the CEO and….you had 55 percent of your assets in government bonds and you don’t know whether you were hedged or not?”
“Mr. Becker, you made a really stupid bet, that went bad, didn’t it? And the taxpayers of America had to pick up the tab for your stupidity, didn’t they?” Kennedy said, tearing into him. Becker tried to respond, saying it was due to a series of “unprecedented events.”
Kennedy wouldn’t let him get away with that, though.
“No, this wasn’t unprecedented,” Kennedy said, blasting him. “This was bone-deep, down-to-the-marrow stupid.”
He continued: “You put all your eggs in one basket and unless you were living on the International Space Station, you could see that interest rates were rising.”
While defending his management of Silicon Valley Bank, Becker finally apologized for the harm caused by the failure of the bank.
“I believe SVB had a positive impact on the roughly 100,000 companies we supported over multiple decades,” Becker said.
“The takeover of SVB has been personally and professionally devastating, and I am truly sorry for how this has impacted SVB’s employees, clients, and shareholders,” he added.
You have to love when Senator John Kennedy makes smart people look ridiculous, just like he does Greg Becker, the former CEO of failed Silicon Valley Bank pic.twitter.com/0zjGLqlYyd
— • ᗰISᑕᕼIᗴᖴ ™ • (@4Mischief) May 17, 2023