Geithner Says Bailout Will Cost Less Than $25B WASHINGTON (AP) -- The eventual cost to taxpayers for the government's $700 billion financial bailout will be less than the $25 billion price tag put on it in the latest estimate, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Thursday. The Congressional Budget Office's most recent estimate is that taxpayers will lose $25 billion on the rescue of automakers, banks and other financial institutions undertaken at the peak of the crisis in the fall of 2008. But Geithner told a hearing called by a congressionally appointed panel overseeing the rescue program that he thinks it will cost less than that. "Those estimates are now around $25 billion," Geithner said. "They are too high, in my judgment. Ultimately, they'll be lower." Measured by its final cost, he said, the bailout "will rank as one of the most effective crisis-reponse programs ever implemented." If we had listened to Republicans, we would be in a very deep and long depression.