Navigating through the FM site’s articles about the financial crisis

This is a copy of the FM reference library page about the Financial Crisis.  These pages are listed at the top of the right side menu bar.

One of the suggestions was to sort these out better, to more easily follow the various series of articles on each topic.  Here’s a first cut at this.  Suggstions for further improvements are welcome.

This site uses the existing free software of WordPress; any suggestions for technology improvements should be directed to WordPress.  Do not bother posting a comment here; WordPress’ staff does not read these.

Financial crisis – what’s happening? how will this end?

This crisis will reshape America.  We do not yet know in what way or how much.  It will strip bare our pretensions, showing what we value most.  It has long been forecast by many, including in articles on this site.  Even now that we are in the whirlwind, these provide valuable background material on its causes — and speculation about the results. 


  1. Other relevant topics discussed on this site
  2. Situation Reports
  3. Diagnosis, analysis, and forecasts about the crisis
  4. Some Solutions
  5. Implications for the future, about structural changes to America and the world
  6. Links to Treasury Department documents

1.  Other relevant topics discussed on this site

For a full list of topics, see the FM reference page on the right side menu bar.  Of esp interest these days:

2.  Situation Reports

  1. The US economy at Defcon 2, 11 March 2008 — Where are we in the downcycle?  What might the world look like when it ends?
  2. The most important story in this week’s newspapers, 22 May 2008 — How solvent is the US government?
  3. Another warning from our leaders, which we will ignore, 4 June 2008 — An extraordinarily clear warning from a senior officer of the Federal Reserve.
  4. High priority report: a geopolitical sitrep on the financial crisis, 15 September 2008
  5. A new sitrep, as we move into phase 3 of the financial crisis, 19 September 2008
  6. A sitrep on the financial crisis: why has the treatment been so slow, so small?, 8 October 2008

3.  Diagnosis, analysis, and forecasts about the crisis

  1. A brief note on the US Dollar. Is this like August 1914?, 8 November 2007 — How the current situation is as unstable financially as was Europe geopolitically in early 1914.
  2. The post-WWII geopolitical regime is dying. Chapter One, 21 November 2007 — Why the current geopolitical order is unstable, describing the policy choices that brought us here.
  3. We have been warned. Death of the post-WWII geopolitical regime, Chapter II, 28 November 2007 — A long list of the warnings we have ignored, from individual experts and major financial institutions.
  4. Diagnosing the eagle, chapter I — the housing bust, 6 December 2007
  5. Death of the post-WWII geopolitical regime, III – death by debt, 8 January 2008 – Origins of the long economic expansion from 1982 to 2006; why the down cycle will be so severe.
  6. Geopolitical implications of the current economic downturn, 24 January 2008 – How will this recession end?  With re-balancing of the global economy — and a decline of the US dollar so that the US goods and services are again competitive.  No more trade deficit, and we can pay our debts.
  7. Let us light a candle while we walk, lest we fear what lies ahead, 10 February 2008 – Putting the end of the post-WWII regime in a larger historical context.
  8. A happy ending to the current economic recession, 12 February 2008 – The political actions which might end this downturn, and their long-term implications.
  9. What will America look like after this recession?, 18 March 2008  — The recession will change many things, from the distribution of wealth within the US to the ranking of global powers.
  10. Consequences of a long, deep recession – part I, 18 June 2008
  11. Consequences of a serious US recession – part II, 19 June 2008
  12. Consequences of a long, deep recession – part III, 20 June 2008
  13. A look at one page of what lies ahead in America’s history, 7 August 2008 — Death of an American industry.
  14. “The Coming US Consumption Bust”, by Nouriel Roubini, 6 September 2008
  15. A vital but widely misunderstood aspect of our financial crisis, 18 September 2008 — Too many homes.
  16. What do we know about the financial crisis? What are the key questions?, 20 September 2008
  17. Essential steps to surviving the current crisis, 23 September 2008
  18. A picture of the post-WWII debt supercycle, 26 September 2008
  19. Is the US economy in good shape, or in terrible shape?, 27 September 2008
  20. The most important news of the month. Perhaps the year., 29 September 2008 — Warnings from our foreign creditors.
  21. Status report on the financial crisis: we’re at a critical point in time, 10 October 2008
  22. The economy is in shock. The effects of this will soon become visible, 11 October 2008
  23. Damage Reports from home and abroad, 12 October 2008
  24. Forecasting the results of this financial crisis – part I, about politics, 13 October 2008
  25. Forecasting the results of this financial crisis – part II, a new economy for America, 14 October 2008
  26. The coming collapse in business spending – made visible today, 15 October 2008
  27. Miscelaneous news and thoughts about the financial crisis, 16 October 2008
  28. The core problem of this financial crisis, which also explains how we got in this mess, 22 October 2008

4.  Some Solutions

  1. Slow steps to nationalizing the US financial sector, 7 April 2008 — How this will change our society.
  2. Slowly a few voices are raised about the pending theft of taxpayer money, 21 September 2008
  3. How should we respond to the crisis?, 24 September 2008
  4. A solution to our financial crisis, 25 September 2008
  5. A quick guide to the “Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008″, 29 September 2008
  6. The Paulson Plan will buy assets cheap, just as all good cons offer easy money to the marks, 30 September 2008
  7. The last opportunity for effective action before disaster strikes, 3 October 2008
  8. Prof Roubini prescribes first aid for America’s economy, 4 October 2008
  9. Effective treatment for this crisis will come with “The Master Settlement of 2009″, 5 October 2008
  10. Dr. Bush, stabilize the economy – stat!, 7 October 2008
  11. The new President will need new solutions for the economic crisis, 9 October 2008
  12. Results from the IMF meeting – just thin gruel, 12 October 2008
  13. The G-7 meeting was the last chance for action before the global recession, 12 October 2008
  14. A brief note about our financial system: Intermediation, disintermediation, and soon re-intermediation, 16 October 2008

5.  Implications for the future, about structural changes to America and the world

  1. Treasury Secretary Paulson leads us across the Rubicon, 9 September 2008
  2. Say good-bye to the old America. Welcome to our new socialist paradise!, 17 September 2008
  3. Another voice warning about the nationalization of AIG, 18 September 2008
  4. Another step away from our Constitutional system, with applause, 19 September 2008
  5. America appoints a Magister Populi to deal with the financial crisis, 21 September 2008
  6. Legal experts discuss if the Paulson Plan is legal, 21 September 2008
  7. German Finance Minister Peer Steinbrück explains how the world is changing, 30 September 2008
  8. America has changed. Why do so many foreigners see this, but so few Americans?, 1 October 2008
  9. America is changing. Read some chillling words from a liberal economist, 2 October 2008

6.  Treasury Department documents

A description of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008, House Committee on Financial Services

We cannot plead the “we didn’t know the details in the fine print” excuse. The details about this massive nationalization have been clearly spelled out for us by the government.

See this page for a current list of Treasury Department documents.

4 thoughts on “Navigating through the FM site’s articles about the financial crisis”

  1. This summary is very helpful. Admirable too, in that you are not attempting to hide any mistaken predictions. MoA has a post today noting that Taiwan has ordered a stop to purchasing of Fannie Mae notes. Since Fannie Mae is backed by the full faith and credit of the US government, that is tantamount to stopping the purchase of US government securities.
    As other countries follow this line, the US could be forced to default on its debt.

  2. Seneca makes a good point, although the default may be forestalled if long term T-bond rates rise high enough to entice U.S. investors to buy them. Hedge funds (those that survive to see 2009) and mutual funds have a lot of cash on the sidelines right now.

  3. Returns on short term T-bills dropped yesterday as investors fled foreign currencies for the “saftey” of the yen and dollar. Safety. . .? Whew!!

  4. From prior Core Problem thread about banks and the future that’s coming, FM: Unemployment. Collapse in retail sales and capital investment. Income declines.

    I agree with your speculative fear. The goal of the bailout and other action should be to avoid primarily one thing: ‘too much’ unemployment. But it’s OK for big income declines among the overpaid financial sector workers, who have been making big fees in buying and selling parts of the ‘fictious capital’ that is now evaporating.

    You claim fixing the housing price dislocations is like taking Johnny’s matches away after the house is burning. I claim it’s more like stopping a broken fire hydrant that is flooding the neighborhood with water – while efforts to reduce the effects of too much water will be failures until the hydrant is fixed.

    The unstable US house prices need to be ‘stabilized’ before the financial system can be fixed – you disagree, but ask and reply: What’s the cure? We do not know … printing money[?] … I suspect this solution, however simple-minded, will prove ineffective

    You believe that the current monetary proposals won’t solve the 2008 Deflation Debt SuperCycle event. I don’t either. Because the deflation can’t be contained without more stable house prices.

    I’m strongly leaning towards a future history which says the main gov’t failure of 2007/2008 in response to the sub-prime mess was a failure to recognize the reality of too many houses available at the current offering price level, and a too slow adjustment to much lower house prices.

    During the housing boom, as mortgage values moved from $6 tr to $12 tr., these and other Asset Backed Securities became the foundational (zero sum) basis for Collateralized Debt Obligations, which in turn supported some $62 tr in notional value of Credit Default Swaps, altho perhaps only $2 tr or less if netted out.

    Along with too many houses, there are too many Big Banks based on the fictitious $6 tr that is disappearing from house values, and all the CDOs based on it.

    What it now looks like: gov’t cash going to save the top Big Bank millionaire bankers from their failure, and thus failing to stop the problems you note: Unemployment. Collapse in retail sales and capital investment.

    The fiscal stimulus/ new tax policy should accept the failures of more banks, and a reduction in banking/ financial employment, while supporting: non-financial employment, non-residential building, more retail sales, and more non-financial business capital investment.

    Future history will likely record that too much gov’t cash went to save Big Bank white elephants whose high priced services a globalized and again risk averse investing organizations no longer needed in such quantities.
    Fabius Maximus replies: This discussion is just irrelevant to current circumstances. most of the nations suffering near collapse have no connection with US — or even global — housing prices. Russia. Much of Eastern Europe (esp. Hungrey and Ukraine). Indonesia and Korea. Argentina. Plus a watch list of at risk nations: Egypt, Dubai, Turkey. The causes mostly have little to do with housing prices, as discussed in my next post.

    FYI — in discussions about macroeconomics, income refers to national income (GDP is one measure of this). Limiting employment losses is one means to this end. A depression is a decrease in national income (measured by GDP) of 10% or more.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to Top