MF Global: back to the futures

November 3, 2011

The implosion of MF Global Holdings Ltd, the largest independent U.S. futures broker until it filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday, calls to mind the collapse of Refco – which in its time was the largest independent U.S. futures broker – after revelations that Refco’s CEO had defrauded his investors. (London hedge fund company Man Group Plc bought Refco’s futures brokerage just about six years ago, and later spun off its brokerage and renamed it MF Global.)

Bernanke and bank rules: lessons sort of learned

September 29, 2011

Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke on Wednesday gave a speech on the lessons about sustained growth that can be gleaned from the experience of emerging markets. Bernanke said not all of the “Washington consensus” policies pushed by multilateral lenders in the 1990s had proven fruitful. In particular, he said the Asian financial crisis showed the risks of opening up financial markets to foreign capital flows until a country has implemented measures to strengthen banks and regulation.

from Reuters Investigates:

Let’s be ethical, economists say

January 3, 2011

Last month's special report “For some professors, disclosure is academic” has been making waves in the academic world, as this story shows:

Transforming the FIRE Economy

August 24, 2010

What went wrong and where we should go are topical post-crisis discussions and many books have been dedicated to tackle this question.

Are CDS markets the euro zone’s iceberg?

February 15, 2010

icebergIn an unfortunate turn of phrase at the height of his country’s current debt crisis, Greek Finance Minister George Papaconstantinou on Monday compared his government’s Herculean task in slashing deficits and debts as akin to changing the course of the Titanic. Sadly, we all know where the great “unsinkable” ended up almost a century ago and I’m sure,  given the chance, Mr Papaconstantinou would have chosen another metaphor. But if the Greek economy (or perhaps the euro zone at large?) is to be cast as the Titanic, then what is its potential iceberg?

from Davos Notebook:

Hank Paulson is not Gavrilo Princip, Lehman is not the Archduke Franz Ferdinand

January 29, 2009

Was letting Lehman go down the biggest mistake of the crisis? Many, including George Soros in the Financial Times, have argued that letting Lehman go down sowed panic to markets, consumers and businesses.