Friday, October 23, 2009

Frontline: OTC Derivatives

I love the PBS show Frontline. The program always does great reporting.

The feature from this week that I'm embedding here on financial derivatives is both startling and upsetting. It runs about an hour.



Unfortunately, it doesn't appear that the US has learned its lesson.

2 comments:

Hopfrog said...

Excellent show. While I was crying out against Greenspan every time he lowered the interest rate, I must say, the gutsiest thing a human being can do is admit they are wrong, and he did it unequivocally and it will help us to improve (which is why saving face blows). Hopefully he can be an adviser to help the current administration avoid the same mistakes he made.

This is not your grandfather's stock market, it has morphed into a playground for the wealthy who exploit it at the expense of the American people and their retirement savings. To think that Bush actually wanted to privatize Social Security and essentially 'play the market' with it. That would have been catastrophic.

Wall Street now is a pack of bloodthirsty wolves and computer programs that seek to not only exploit pricing, but to manipulate it as well. Oh and by the way, after all the collapse and bailouts, Wall Street execs will see record bonuses this year. Its thievery. REGULATION is needed now more than ever. I go nuts listening to economists quoting from first year economics books about candy stores, Adam Smith, and the efficiency of an unregulated market. To me they sound like Astronomers who would still like to argue that the world is flat because everyone believed the world was flat a thousand years ago. Times have changed dramatically and the idea that economic theory is timeless is foolhardy.

Anyways, /rantoff. If you liked that clip you might like this short clip of another one of the very few who had their heads on straight and isn't afraid to tell it like it is.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdVP_sgCETo

Mark said...

I've seen those old Peter Schiff highlights before. Insane stuff. Those hacks on the Fox News program laughing at him and predicting the worst is over... priceless.

It's depressing how few people saw this storm coming.

And your take on Wall St. and the stock markets is just sad... but true.

Maybe it's because I was in high school when it happened, but I was unaware of LTCM, its collapse, its "bailout," and the effect it had on the way markets work. Just ridiculous.

And I feel no satisfaction at all in Greenspan admitting defeat. It's too late for any remorse.