Business: Fallout from a Financial War

The cost of the confrontation may be high for U.S. banks

Low gutter language is seldom heard in the world of high finance, but a lot of strong oaths were echoing last week through the paneled offices of private bankers. Fearful that they might be trapped in the crossfire of the U.S.Iranian economic war, many European moneymen were distressed at the haste with which U.S. banks have declared Iranian loans in default and have seized Tehran's overseas assets. Complained an angry Luxembourg banker: "Third parties are being unnecessarily drawn into the conflict. The Americans are displaying Wild West manners and throwing clubs...

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