"If you really look at new mortgage originations, it's very low ... individuals are not out buying homes."
Former Wall Street analyst who runs Ader Investment Management, arguing that recent signs of a comeback in the housing market are due to hedge funds and private equity scooping up foreclosed homes, not Main Street buyers
"I concluded it's not a good thing, and they gave me a PhD for that."
Federal Reserve chairman, drawing laughter with a mention of his doctoral dissertation on economic uncertainty, while urging Congress to shield the fragile economy from the fiscal cliff
"Obviously, you know, there was a failure of control. If you run an army, if you run a church, if you run a government, any large institution, people will go off the reservation sometimes."
Billionaire investor, discussing the London Whale incident at JPMorgan Chase, in an interview where he said its CEO, Jamie Dimon, would be the best person to lead the Treasury Department in a financial crisis
"The term is going to become a new drinking game. Every time you hear it, you're going to have to take another swig of beer."
A senior portfolio manager at DoubleLine Capital in Los Angeles, on all the hype about the fiscal cliff
"I used to live in Texas. If we have to adopt the accent, I am ready."
Chairman and CEO of Cleveland's KeyCorp, talking about how natural-gas fracking in the Midwest is boosting economic growth and loan demand
"Basel treats balloon mortgages like battery acid."
President of the Independent Community Bankers of America, arguing the now delayed Basel III rules would force 75 percent of community banks to stop, or sharply curtail, mortgage lending
"Banks are starting to worry that they're not dealing with supervisors -(but) much more with a prosecutor."
Chair of the consumer financial services practice at Goodwin Procter, relaying a common complaint that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has an adversarial stance toward banks and is too aggressive in its enforcement actions
"I think people aren't as interested in selling as the pundits would say."
Director at Crowe Horwath, on a survey of 234 bankers in which only 2 percent said they plan to sell
"In exchange for my car keys the pawnbroker transferred the cash to my bank account the same day."
U.K. computer entrepreneur, on how he financed a lavish Christmas with a Â£20,000 loan against his Porsche 911 Turbo from a new breed of posh pawn-brokers that are getting busier amid banks' tight lending