Meredith Whitney is a troublemaker. Even though she is speaking barely above a whisper, over breakfast at New York's Core Club, her words have sharp edges. "Bankers complaining about new regulations and higher capital requirements remind me of melodramatic soccer players," she says. "You know, the ones that get barely brushed and they're on the ground rolling around and moaning? There are plenty of countries that have higher capital standards than the U.S., and they deal with it. We're supposed to be dealing with the smartest minds out there, and they can't adjust to a different environment?"
She's not finished. Her breakfast of tea, egg whites, salsa and a side of bacon is getting cold.
"It's a reflection of the fact that over the last 20 years it's been so easy to make money off the mortgage industry that they can't figure out how to rationalize their businesses," she continues. "Rules change. Deal with it. This is what companies do time in and time out. Bankers are embarrassing themselves with all this moaning. This may get me into trouble, but they could learn something from the rest of corporate America."