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The Financial Crisis

Overview

"'Davies offers the most comprehensive post-mortem yet of the Great Crisis - essential reading for those who are trying to fix a still precarious post-crisis world.' Stephen S. Roach, Chairman, Morgan Stanley Asia" "'It's hard to think of anyone better qualified than Howard Davies to evaluate the competing arguments about what caused the worst financial crisis and recession since the 1930s.' Robert Peston, BBC Business Editor" "'Howard Davies' lucid and panoramic account of the financial crisis and the reasons for it is crisply and entertainingly ...

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Overview

"'Davies offers the most comprehensive post-mortem yet of the Great Crisis - essential reading for those who are trying to fix a still precarious post-crisis world.' Stephen S. Roach, Chairman, Morgan Stanley Asia" "'It's hard to think of anyone better qualified than Howard Davies to evaluate the competing arguments about what caused the worst financial crisis and recession since the 1930s.' Robert Peston, BBC Business Editor" "'Howard Davies' lucid and panoramic account of the financial crisis and the reasons for it is crisply and entertainingly written. It is a great primer for anyone hoping to understand how a complex set of causes united to lead to the near-collapse of global finance in 2008.' John Gapper, Associate Editor and Chief Business Commentator, Financial Times" "There is still no consensus on who or what caused the financial crisis which engulfed the world, beginning in the summer of 2007." "A huge number of suspects have been identified, from greedy investment bankers, through feckless borrowers, dilatory regulators and myopic central bankers to violent video games and high levels of testosterone among the denizens of trading floors. There is not even agreement on whether the crisis shows a need for more government intervention in markets, or less: some maintain that government encouragement of home ownership lay at the heart of the problem in the US, in particular." In the Financial Crisis: Who is to Blame? Howard Davies charts a course through these arguments, and the evidence advanced for each of them. The reader can thereby assess the weight to be attached to each, and the likely effectiveness of the remedies under development.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Balanced, succinct, authoritative and remarkably comprehensive."
The Times

"In this eminently readable account of the current crisis, Howard Davies writes with a wealth of experience."
The Oldie

"Financial crisis is a many-headed hydra and unravelling its causes a Herculean task. In The Financial Crisis: Who is to Blame?, Howard Davies makes significant progress."
Times Higher Education

"An admirable summary of issues for normal people who have a life outside finance."
Evening Standard

"Davies' expertise and nuance regarding the crisis shines through and provides a fascinating account of a situation we shall hopefully never see again."
Business Destinations

"An excellent primer."
Financial World

"It's hard to think of anyone better qualified than Howard Davies to evaluate the competing arguments about what caused the worst financial crisis and recession since the 1930s."
Robert Peston, Business Editor for BBC News

"Davies offers the most comprehensive post-mortem yet of the Great Crisis — essential reading for those who are trying to fix a still precarious post-crisis world."
Stephen S. Roach, Chairman‪ of Morgan Stanley Asia

"Howard Davies' lucid and panoramic account of the financial crisis and the reasons for it is crisply and entertainingly written. It is a great primer for anyone hoping to understand how a complex set of causes united to lead to the near-collapse of global finance in 2008."
John Gapper, Associate Editor and Chief Business Commentator, Financial Times

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780745651644
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 10/18/2010
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Howard Davies is the director of the London School of Economics and Political Science.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements

Introduction 1

A The Big Picture 7

1 Frankenstein's Monster: The End of Laissez-Faire Capitalism 9

2 The Rich get Richer - the Poor Borrow 13

3 The Savings Glut: Global Imbalances 17

4 Too Loose for Too Long - US Monetary Policy 21

B The Trigger 25

5 Minsky's Moment 27

6 The Subprime Collapse: A Failure of Government? 30

C The Failures of Regulation 35

7 A Capital Shortage 37

8 Procyclicality 42

9 The Canary in the Coal Mine: Off-Balance Sheet Vehicles 46

10 The Taxi at the Station - Liquidity 50

11 The Blind Man and the Elephant: US Regulation 57

12 SEC - RIP? 66

13 Financial Weapons of Mass Destruction: Derivatives 71

14 Federal Mortgage Regulation 76

15 Casino Banking: The End of Glass-Steagall 79

16 Too Big to Fail 84

17 Lighting the Touchpaper: Light Touch Regulation 89

18 There were Three People in the Marriage - UK Regulation 93

19 A Failure of Coordination 100

20 Paradise Lost: Offshore Centres 104

D Accountants, Auditors and Rating Agencies 109

21 Shoot the Messenger: Fair Value Accounting 111

22 Tunnel Vision: The Auditors 119

23 Conflicts of Interest: Credit Rating Agencies 123

E Financial Firms and Markets 131

24 Breaking the Chain: Originate to Distribute 133

25 Too Complex to Trade: Derivatives 138

26 Disaster Myopia: Risk Management 142

27 The Roach Motel: Corporate Governance 146

28 Blankfein's Bonus: Pay and Incentives 155

29 The Vampire Squid: Fraud 161

30 A Plague of Locusts: Hedge Funds 164

31 Short-Selling 170

F Economics and Finance Theory: Irrational Expectations 175

32 The Death of Economics 177

33 Inefficient Markets 185

34 An Ethics-Free Zone: Business Schools 191

G Wild Cards 195

35 The Watchdog that Didn't Bark: The Media 197

36 Greed is Bad 202

37 Lara Croft: Video Games 206

38 Hormones 208

And Finally... 211

39 A Combustible Mixture 213

Index 219

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