Stanford’s (and Google’s and Cisco’s) Hennessy chimes in on credit crisis

Stanford President John Hennessy, who sits on the board of directors at both Google and Cisco Systems, added his voice to the rising chorus calling for resolution sooner rather than later to the credit crisis enveloping the U.S. economy, in an interview with Bloomberg News.

“If the CEOs could ask any one question and get the answer from the board, that’s the question they would like the answer to. If we don’t solve the liquidity crisis and the credit squeeze goes deeper and we enter a liquidity trap or something, I think we’ve got a real problem.”

The problems for high-technology companies could be exacerbated by a downturn in spending by financial firms on technology. Finance-industry technology outlays are expected to sink 20 percent to $17.6 billion next year from an estimated $21.9 billion in 2008, according to a Bloomberg interview with Larry Tabb, founder of Tabb Group, which tracks securities firm budgets.

Hennessy concurs, telling Bloomberg Thursday “You’re absolutely going to see a slowdown in some of that spending. “It’s inevitable, given what’s happened.”

The crisis in the U.S. financial markets also is prompting more students to look for careers beyond Wall Street, and possibly to jobs in high-technology companies in Silicon Valley, according to Hennessy:

“There’s a lot of rethinking of investment banking as (a) career,” Hennessy said. “If they end up going into general management, I think it will be better in the long term for growing the economy.”


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