Remembering the Origins of the Financial Crisis

It’s hard to believe that we’re now six years removed from the onset of the financial crisis.  Lehman Brothers filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on September 15, 2008, in what is the largest bankruptcy filing in U.S. history.  Unfortunately, that was just the beginning.

CNBC put out a very interesting piece revisiting the Lehman debacle and looking at the bailout that never materialized for this bank.  It takes a look back at some of the decision-making and some of the input that went into those decisions.

The Great Recession is an event that fascinates me both professionally as a lawyer and personally.  It still amazes me, 6 years later, at how the U.S. economy, and much of the world’s economy, was almost done in large part by investors betting on bad loans that never should have been made and that were mishandled once they were made.

The economy is much better than it was six years ago in September 2008.  Some parts of it are booming now.  But many other parts are still feeling the effects of the Great Recession.  Unemployment and underemployment rates are still higher than they should be.  Lending standards have eased some since the years immediately following the collapse, but they are still hard to come by.  And in what scares me the most, real estate prices are skyrocketing again creating a potentially new housing bubble.

On this sixth anniversary at what will probably be the worst economic event of my lifetime, it is interesting to take a look back and wonder “what if.”  It’s at least a more productive activity than taking another Facebook quiz to figure out “what soup am I.”

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