The markets have so far reacted favourably
to the US Government taking the Federal National Mortgage Association “Fannie
Mae” and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation “Freddie Mac” into
US Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson deserves credit for
decisive action - in sharp contrast with, for example, the British government’s
dithering over Northern Rock.
However, although his action has restored some confidence
and taken off some immediate pressure, entrepreneurs in particular should not
make the mistake of thinking they can stop worrying about the “credit crunch”.
The problems that caused the crisis still remain. The
property market still needs to undergo painful revaluation. This is a temporary – dare one say it,
election year – measure, for which the bills will have to be paid later.
More to the point, it is the old story that big government
may feel it has no choice but to bail out big business, but small business
cannot expect the same.
The big banks who caused the crisis will probably survive
it, but many entrepreneurs who did nothing wrong will not.