Financial Turmoil in Europe and the United States: Essays

Financial Turmoil in Europe and the United States: Essays

by George Soros
     
 

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The dire economic situation we find ourselves in is not a result of economic forces alone, but of the policies pursued, and not pursued, by world leaders. In this collection of his recent writings on the global financial situation, George Soros presents his views and analysis of key economic policy choices leading up to, during, and following the financial crisis of…  See more details below

Overview

The dire economic situation we find ourselves in is not a result of economic forces alone, but of the policies pursued, and not pursued, by world leaders. In this collection of his recent writings on the global financial situation, George Soros presents his views and analysis of key economic policy choices leading up to, during, and following the financial crisis of 2008-2009.

Soros explores domestic and international policy choices like how to manage the (then) potential implosion of Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, deploying measures to stem global contagion from the sub-prime crisis, alternative options on bailing out lesser developed countries and why this was vital, the structural problems of European economic management, and more.

Financial Turmoil in Europe and the United States elegantly distills the choices at hand, and takes the reader on a journey of real time economic policy work and experimentation.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Kirkus Reviews
“Soros is someone who has made his billions… anticipating the reaction of markets to ordinary realities, pleasant and otherwise—so it’s well worth paying attention to his views on the world’s financial systems.  Not for the faint of heart or the innumerate. For policy and financial wonks, a bracing read.”

Bloomberg
“Soros has called himself ‘a failed philosopher.’ He’s actually a rarer species: A pathologist of market linkages and psychology -- a man who quickly grasps how an unhealthy growth of credit here will morph into a morbid bubble there. His diagnoses are clear, whether he’s describing commodity index investing or former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson’s flawed plan to purchase distressed mortgage-backed securities.”
 
New York Journal of Books
“The current financial crisis is explained concisely with eloquence. Understanding what is happening and what is to be done is reason enough to read Financial Turmoil. . . . Dr. Soros shows us once again in these essays that he is not only a competent trader. He is an admirable thinker, and an adept policy analyst. If we were all as good at political economy as he is there would be no financial bubbles—and there would probably be less financial turmoil.”
 
Bloomberg
“This is a compilation of op-ed articles that the billionaire investor wrote as the euro crisis boiled up. As a retread, it displays Soros’s knack for assessing market linkages and psychology on the fly.”
 
Malaysia Star
“Every essay is excellent in brevity and content, attesting to Soros' consummate skill as a writer and his level of expertise as an investor. The introduction being the lead-in to a more serious matter is the best. In an astounding clear prose Soros explains the root of the crisis, calling it the culmination of a super bubble built since the 1980s under the reign of Reaganomics and Thatcherism that advocated for minimal government interference. Soro's recount of the aftermath of the crisis is by far the clearest. Not only is the sequence of events covered relevant, the principles and beliefs shaping minds of policy makers assigned to carry out rescue efforts are bluntly refuted.”
 

LSE Review of Books
“A curious combination of philosophy, finance and policy advice… His analysis is extremely authoritative and by pursuing his theory of ‘reflexivity’, his account has a certain uniqueness. It is also re-assuring to find that his argument is sufficiently complex as to be almost contradictory at times. Many accounts of the crisis seem to work the facts around a pre-determined narrative; Soros works his narrative around the facts… The book is a brisk and easy read, which contains such diversity of opinion as to interest anyone with an eye on recent events.”

Kirkus Reviews
The European economy seems to be sliding from bad to worse, and with it the planet's markets. Soros (The New Paradigm for Financial Markets: The Credit Crisis of 2008 and What It Means, 2008, etc.), maven of the tickertape, ventures persuasive reasons why. First, the buried lede, which comes late in the book: The European economy is pegged to the euro, and "the euro is a patently flawed construct." It is flawed, writes the author, because its architects had not yet formed the perfect--or even an imperfect--financial union sufficient to back the unified currency, expecting its flaws to be corrected, "if and when they became acute, by the same process that brought the European Union into existence." That process was a frankensteining of different national agendas, a process that, in large part, was engineered by Germany so that Europe would sign off on its reunification. Gathering articles written for the Financial Times and New York Review of Books, among other journals, indulges in some interesting speculative exercises: What would happen, for instance, if Germany withdrew from the euro and went back to the mark? The answer might be an instant enrichment of Germans and immiseration of everyone else--so why haven't the Germans done so? Soros' explorations of the European (and, to a somewhat lesser extent, American) market ought to send readers running for their economics dictionaries, since some terms are not quite completely defined or spelled out: Why is government involvement in mortgage insurance a good thing? What is the Danish model? What is the difference between fiscal policy and monetary policy? Soros is someone who has made his billions knowing those things and anticipating the reaction of markets to ordinary realities, pleasant and otherwise--so it's well worth paying attention to his views on the world's financial systems. Not for the faint of heart or the innumerate. For policy and financial wonks, a bracing read.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781610391535
Publisher:
PublicAffairs
Publication date:
01/24/2012
Sold by:
Hachette Digital, Inc.
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
208
File size:
351 KB

Meet the Author

George Soros is chairman of Soros Fund Management and is the founder of a global network of foundations dedicated to supporting open societies. He is the author of several best-selling books including The New Paradigm for Financial Markets: The Crash of 2008; The Crisis of Global Capitalism; The Bubble of American Supremacy; Underwriting Democracy; and The Age of Fallibility. He was born in Budapest and lives in New York City.

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