Romney's Bain Had Loads of Profit, Bankruptcies

Wall Street Journal says Romney's firm didn't always turn things around
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 9, 2012 11:47 AM CST
Romney's Bain Had Loads of Profit, Bankruptcies
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney makes calls to likely voters at his New Hampshire campaign headquarters on January 9, 2012 in Manchester, New Hampshire.   (Getty Images)

Mitt Romney has touted his time at Bain Capital as proof that he's the "turnaround artist" America needs, but an analysis of the companies he took over shows that may not be entirely true. The Wall Street Journal looked at 77 businesses Bain invested in under Romney's leadership and found that 22% went bankrupt or closed their doors within eight years—a rate that appears to be higher than other buyout firms of that era, and which one Federal Reserve Bank researcher says "seems large."

Romney did generate fantastic return for his investors, with $2.5 billion in profits. About 70% of that came from just 10 deals—and four of those companies wound up going bankrupt. Bain says the Journal's analysis is "inaccurate and misleading," noting that in many cases it no longer owned the companies when they went belly-up. Others note that Bain was buying small, potentially vulnerable companies. "I don't think you can hold Mitt out as a great investor per se," says one former Bain executive, "but he was an excellent CEO." (More Bain Capital stories.)

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