From an article by Jeremy Siegel at the Wall Street Journal's website:
Despite the recent turmoil, there is good evidence that the worst is over, especially for the commercial banks with access to Federal Reserve credit. Despite yesterday's severe sell-off, most are significantly higher than their July 15 low, and some such as Wells Fargo and UBS are up over 50%. . . . Don't get me wrong, this is good news. I'm happy that the American finance industry has not collapsed in the wake of the Bear Stearns bailout and the failures of Lehman and AIG. I'm glad there isn't going to be a depression. But thousands of people have still lost their jobs. Lives have been ruined, families thrown into turmoil. Maybe most of them will be able to find work elsewhere as the industry recovers, but that's not really the point.
It is shocking that firms that withstood the Great Depression are now failing in what economists might not even call a recession. But their failure was not caused by lack of demand for their services. It was caused by management's unwillingness to understand and face the risks of the investments they made. The names of the players will change, but the future growth of the financial services industry is assured.
Economics: surely the most bloodless of all the social sciences.