Fake TARP paybacks: small bank edition 

First General Motors falsely claimed they repaid all of their TARP money. Then Chrysler did the same thing. Now a slew of banks is using the same playbook to claim they have paid the government for their TARP funds. The Boston Globe reports:

Hundreds of small banks that received US aid after the financial crisis appear to have found a creative way to repay the funds: obtain money from a different government program.

Most of the 627 banks that still hold money from the controversial Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, have filed applications to roll the obligations into the government’s new Small Business Lending Fund, according to Treasury officials and the banks.

“It’s a great deal’’ for banks, said Linus Wilson, assistant professor of finance at the University of Louisiana Lafayette, who has been tracking the programs. “The Small Business Lending Fund does not have the stigma that the TARP does.’’

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