Tag Archives: Secretary Geithner

The Administration Starts to Fight On Banking, But For What?

By Simon Johnson

Speaking to the American Enterprise Institute, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner had some good lines yesterday,

“The magnitude of the financial shock [in fall 2008] was in some ways greater than that which caused the Great Depression.  The damage has been catastrophic, causing more damage to the livelihoods and economic security of Americans and, in particular, the middle class, than any financial crisis in three generations.”

Like Ben Bernanke, Mr. Geithner also finally grasps at least the broad contours of the doom loop,

“For three decades, the American financial system produced a significant financial crisis every three to five years. Each major financial shock forced policy actions mostly by the Fed to lower interest rates and to provide liquidity to contain the resulting damage. The apparent success of those actions in limiting the depth and duration of recessions led to greater confidence and greater risk taking. “

But then he falters. Continue reading