Wednesday, April 14, 2010

WaMu Bank Failure


Senate Committee Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs | Investigations

Panelists testified on the role of high risk mortgages, focusing on Washington Mutual Bank (WaMu), which was the nation’s largest thrift with more than $300 billion in assets, $188 billion in deposits, and 43,000 employees. Bank officials testified about events that led to the bank's failure, business and accounting practices, and the role of federal regulation. This hearing was the first of a series of hearings the subcommittee held on Wall Street and the 2008 financial crisis.




Wednesday, April 07, 2010

vanity fair via HuffPo

Recently Vanity Fair editor Graydon Carter and [Vanity Fair] contributing editor Michael Lewis sat together onstage in front of an intimate crowd at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and discussed Lewis’s new book, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, which tackles the question of what caused the U.S. economy to tank. (It was excerpted in the April issue.)

Among those who attended the event were writers Tom Wolfe and Gay Talese, New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly, and Time Inc.’s John Huey. Now you too can hear the entire conversation between Carter and Lewis—just click here. But be careful visiting that link. You will probably get sucked into Lewis’s hour-long talk, just as the House Republican book group became engrossed in a lecture Lewis gave about the financial collapse.
“I was supposed to be there for an hour,” says Lewis in the clip above, referring to his visit with the Hill staffers. “I was there for almost three. And nobody left. And their questions were increasingly: ‘Oh my God, Goldman Sachs did what? A.I.G. did what?’ They didn’t understand it ... The minute they started to understand, they were outraged. And I think the more things are explained, the more outraged people will get.”