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As if things weren’t already tough enough for hedge funds and private equity firms, what with liquidity drying up faster than you can say Death Valley in the face of the subprime meltdown, yet another congressman is proposing yet another commission to study the impact of these funds on the U.S. economy. The bill from Congressman John B. Larson (D-Conn.), a member of the House Ways and Means Committee and vice chairman of the House Democratic caucus, would create a commission of 10 members comprised of ex- perts chosen by Democratic and Republican leaders. But this is no muckraking exer- cise, given the importance of the hedge fund industry to Larson’s home state. Larson plans to take a broader look at the tax treatment of these active investors to determine whether it fits their business model. “It impacts more than just the taxation of the fund managers; it impacts those American workers [with] pension investments in this area,” Larson said when announcing the commission. Given the market gyrations, private equity and hedge funds may need all the help they can get.

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