The current global financial crisis carries a made-in-America label. In this incisive book, Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz explains how America exported bad economics, bad policies, and bad behaviour to the rest of the world, only to cobble together a haphazard and ineffective response when the markets finally seized up.
This devastating and inspiring book, by one of the world’s leading economic thinkers, lays out not only the course of the financial crisis which began in 2007, but its underlying causes, and shows why much more radical reforms are needed than are currently being contemplated if we are to avoid similar ‘systemic’ crises in the future. It shows why the bailout has been only marginally effective and how it could have been much more so, and outlines the enormous opportunity – not yet taken – to design a new global financial architecture. It is highly critical of many of the actions not only of George Bush’s administration, but also of Barack Obama’s. It shows why the bulk of the cost of recovery should be borne by those in the financial sector – not just for reasons of natural justice, but for compelling economic reasons also. More than any of this, it reminds readers to think constantly about what economies are for, and the human purposes they serve.
Freefall is an instant classic, combining an enthralling whodunit account of the current crisis with a bracing discussion of the broader economic issues at stake.