Since news of Bank of America's big accounting error broke this week, academics, journalists, former regulators and other industry observers have taken to Twitter to discuss what to take away from the lender's latest snafu. Some are using the gaffe as an occasion to criticize the Federal Reserve's ability to oversee stress tests, while others argue that Bank of America is simply too big to manage. Still others, including former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. head Sheila Bair, contend that byzantine accounting rules led the country's second-largest bank to report that it had $4 billion more in capital than it actually held. Here's a round-up of some of the sharpest questions raised and conclusions drawn from Bank of America's mistake.

Financial columnist James Saft argued that Bank of America's mistake offers further evidence that big banks are too complex:

Overly complicated systems lead to blunders on the part of both banks and regulators, according to Neil Barofsky, a former Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program and current partner at law firm Jenner & Block.







Another prominent former regulator, ex-Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. chief Sheila Bair, found fault with needlessly convoluted accounting rules and capital requirements.


The New York Times' Binyamin Appelbaum suggested that Bank of America's error may cast doubt on other stress test results:


But at least one respondent felt comfortable trusting other banks' ability to do the math.


A few people on Twitter puzzled over Bank of America's relative quiet in the aftermath of the big reveal.



Bank of America's public relations strategy was also called into question when the lender's customer service account, @BofA_Help, inadvertently got involved in a discussion of the accounting error. The bank's Twitter handle picked up on a tweet from Alexis Goldstein—the communications director of The Other 98%, a grassroots organization that defines itself as "standing against Big Money and corporate lobbyists."





Meanwhile, Suffolk Law School professor Kathleen Engel expressed hope that Bank of America's error would teach it compassion toward customers who make their own mistakes.