Tuesday, May 15, 2012
Lewis Book Helps Explain Current Market Scandal
What a timely read: The best seller by Michael Lewis, “The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine,” is required reading to understand the current scandal with the missing $2 billion at J. P. Morgan Investment Bank. Lewis tells the story of hedge fund managers in the early 2000s who went to Securities and Exchange Commission officials with the impending collapse of the lousy bad credit mortgage bond market. They laid out the story for the SEC. The SEC “doesn't dare or bother to” investigate and “the smart people who understood what was or might be happening were paralyzed by hope and fear.” Crooks and stupid people were running the markets and the rating services, S&P and Moodys, were afraid of losing business by asking the right questions. The AAA bond rating meant nothing. We know how that turned out. The book will put you on edge as the current mess unfolds. So who else has $2 billion unaccounted for?