Banks repay 75 percent of bailout money received, Geithner says

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The Treasury secretary, Timothy F. Geithner, said on Tuesday that taxpayers were recovering their investment from the financial bailouts as the program is wound down. But he acknowledged there would probably be a loss from the rescue of the insurer, American International Group.

Mr. Geithner told a watchdog panel that banks had repaid about 75 percent of the bailout money they received, and the government’s investments in those banks had brought taxpayers $21 billion.

Mr. Geithner also said at a hearing of the Congressional Oversight Panel that the auto industry had made significant structural changes, and that the chances that General Motors and Chrysler would repay their bailout money had improved.

The oversight panel was created by Congress to oversee the Treasury Department’s $700 billion financial bailout program, created at the height of the financial crisis in the fall of 2008. The panel has been critical of the program, known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP.

TARP “has helped restore financial stability at a much lower cost than anticipated,” Mr. Geithner said in his testimony. “We have already recovered more than half of total disbursements under the program. And TARP investments have generated $24 billion in additional revenue for taxpayers.”

The panel’s chairwoman, Elizabeth Warren, said that with the program’s Oct. 3 expiration approaching, “this panel must know whether Treasury has carefully monitored the financial system to measure potential risks.”

“Treasury has refused to call for additional stress tests of our financial system,” Ms. Warren said.