An interesting interview featuring billionaire investor Wilbur Ross and the legendary Hank Greenberg on CNBC's Squawk Box found both being pretty candid on the state of the U.S. economy and the mortgage market. Ross suggested that numerous banks are likely to fail amid a faltering housing market and an economy in recession. (Not that we haven't already seen banks fail this year.) Summary via the Squawk Roundup:
"I think that the big banks won't fail in the sense that they will go to zero and depositors would lose money. I think the Fed and other regulators will make things happen. I think it's the medium-sized banks, and particularly some of those that got overextended with the subprime and other kind of mortgage debt. I think those are the ones that had the serious mismatch, making 20- and 30-year loans based on 90-day deposits."
Quote of the day goes to Ross as well. "Making real triple-As will solve a lot of the problem," he said in reference to restoring investor confidence in the rating system. "The problem is we've had a lot fake triple-As before." Click here to see the full video.