Q: Well Fargo has stayed very strong relative to your competitors. Why?
A: We just didn't make some of the mistakes that others did. We still made some mistakes, and that's very unfortunate. In some cases, we should have known better. In general—and I don't know if I take much pride in this—we're probably the least ugly of the ugly ducks because we did not participate in some of the excesses, particularly related to subprime borrowers and [collateralized debt obligations] and highly leveraged loans.
~ Richard Kovacevich, CEO, Wells Fargo, "Wells Fargo's Kovacevich: The Importance of Hitting Bottom," BusinessWeek, October 22, 2008 (Nov. 3 issue), interview with Maria Bartiromo