Lehman Brothers 2008: The Big Short (2015) Paramount

Tony Gosling tony at cultureshop.org.uk
Mon Feb 8 12:57:14 GMT 2016


The Big Short - "Jenga" Clip (2015) - Paramount Pictures


The Big Short - Trailer #2 "Screwed" (2015) - Paramount Pictures



The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine Paperback – 14 Jan 2011


with style on the dark side of finance
Const on 21 April 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book's salient points appear on the bottom 
half of p.243 "...how Wall Street investment 
banks somehow conned the rating agencies into 
blessing piles of crappy loans;how this had 
enabled the lending of trillions of dollars to 
ordinary Americans;how ordinary Americans had 
happily complied and told the lies they needed to 
tell to obtain the loans;how the machinery that 
turned the loans into supposedly riskless 
securities was so complicated that investors had 
ceased to evaluate the risks;how the problem had 
grown so big that the end was bound to be 
cataclysmic and have big social and political consequences..."

The elements that comprise the book excellence 
are:the first class intellect of the author 
matching the quality of the Institutions he was 
educated namely Princeton University and the 
London School of Economics;his charisma in 
writing concisely, lucidly and impressively 
wittily, and the fact that he is imbued with 
morality;the story is not presented in the 
abstract but through brilliant albeit eccentric 
protagonists - all betting and winning against 
the market - such as Steve Eisman graduating from 
the University of Pennsylvania magna cum 
laude,and then with honours from Harvard Law 
School and Dr Michael Burry who abandoned 
neurology studies at Stanford to immerse himself 
in the world of 
more ›

A well written, thoroughly researched insight 
into the relatively small band of individuals 
that predicted that the house mortgage market 
would implode. To these investors and speculators 
who chose to take, not much more than a cursory 
glance at the underlying assets of the glut of 
'mortgage bonds' marketed by Wall Street 
institutions, it was blindingly obvious that many 
contained extremely high levels of 'guaranteed to 
default' sub-prime borrowers. They were further 
amazed when they were offered by Blue Chip 
universally known companies who in many cases had 
put the bonds together and sold them to their 
clients, insurance cover at very low cost, to pay 
out vast sums of money as and when the bonds 
failed. And guess what?........you didn't even 
have to own one of these toxic pieces of 
financial crud....just pay the premium and 
pick-up the loot! These policies known as Credit 
Default Swaps (CDS) are what the author refers to as 'The Big Short'.

Many of the beneficiaries were constrained in 
making even more money by restricting the CDS's 
they bought because of the fear that making a 
killing cannot be this easy and 'we must have 
missed something'. They hadn't, it was a fast route to vast riches.

Those who put together these Mortgage Bonds and 
those who traded in them, blindly ignoring the 
irresponsible dishing out of mortgages to all and 
sundry and the collapse in the value of 
properties were either blinded with greed or certifiably stupid.

A really good book, interesting, informative but 
at the same time quite shocking.
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