Last night in NYC I had dinner with people from the financial world who corroborated what I am experiencing myself and that is that while governments around the world are pumping money into banks, banks are not lending it or are lending it at shark loan rates. I heard stories of well leased real estate properties with great cash flow in Manhattan that can´t be financed for rates lower than 6.5%. This is the same thing that is happening to me and my partners in a 120,000 square feet building we own in Tribeca and are trying to refinance. Banks are asking for draconian spreads in order to rebuild their inefficient structures. In the meantime cheap government funds are not passed on to the economy and the economy is starving for credit. Given this situation I think that governments around the world, and I say around the world because this is not only a US government problem, should disintermidiate banks and start lending directly to corporate borrowers. Only faced with this competition I believe that banks will change their predatory behavior and adjust. Lowering the salaries of the top bankers it´s not enough. Banks have to reestablish credit.

Follow Martin Varsavsky on Twitter: twitter.com/martinvars

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