Wall Street Hopes for Bowles at Treasury

Signing on Clinton’s chief of staff would signal the Obama administration is ready to strike a deal to cut deficit.

Wall Street executives who lost a bet that Republican Mitt Romney would defeat President Barack Obama are bracing for tougher regulation and hoping a deal can be struck with Congress to cut the deficit.

Obama’s choice to succeed Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner will be watched closely for signs about the administration’s approach to business and the deficit, industry executives said. Erskine Bowles, who served as chief of staff under former President Bill Clinton, would be a sign that Obama is willing to endorse a bipartisan debt-reduction plan supported by many business leaders, they said.

Simpson-Bowles Plan

Wall Street leaders started throwing their support behind Bowles’s debt-reduction efforts even before the election. JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon, 56, said last month that the economy “would be booming” if Congress had passed the so-called Simpson-Bowles plan co-authored with former Republican Senator Alan Simpson last year.

Fink, Lew

Mack said he doesn’t think the administration worked closely enough with the business community, adding that he would be comforted by seeing Obama choose a CEO to run Treasury such as BlackRock Inc.’s Larry Fink, General Electric Co.’s Jeff Immelt, American Express Co.’s Kenneth I. Chenault or Honeywell International Inc.’s David Cote.

‘The Taxman’

The solution worked out by the Obama administration will probably include more tax increases and fewer spending cuts than investors thought before the election, which is weighing on the market, Pacific Investment Management Co.’s Bill Gross told Bloomberg Television’s Trish Regan.

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