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Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy

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Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Raghuram Rajan was one of the few economists who warned of the global financial crisis before it hit. Now, as the world struggles to recover, it's tempting to blame what happened on just a few greedy bankers who took irrational risks and left the rest of us to foot the bill. In Fault Lines, Rajan argues that serious flaws in the economy are also to blame, and warns that a potentially more devastating crisis awaits us if they aren't fixed.

Rajan shows how the individual choices that collectively brought about the economic meltdown--made by bankers, government officials, and ordinary homeowners--were rational responses to a flawed global financial order in which the incentives to take on risk are incredibly out of step with the dangers those risks pose. He traces the deepening fault lines in a world overly dependent on the indebted American consumer to power global economic growth and stave off global downturns. He exposes a system where America's growing inequality and thin social safety net create tremendous political pressure to encourage easy credit and keep job creation robust, no matter what the consequences to the economy's long-term health; and where the U.S. financial sector, with its skewed incentives, is the critical but unstable link between an overstimulated America and an underconsuming world.

In Fault Lines, Rajan demonstrates how unequal access to education and health care in the United States puts us all in deeper financial peril, even as the economic choices of countries like Germany, Japan, and China place an undue burden on America to get its policies right. He outlines the hard choices we need to make to ensure a more stable world economy and restore lasting prosperity.

Review:

"Rajan scoops Business Book prize. One of the few economists to see the financial crisis coming has won the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year award. Raghuram Rajan collected the £30,000 ($47,000) prize for Fault Lines in New York on Wednesday." --Andrew Hill, Financial Times

Book News Annotation:

Why are poorer developing countries financing the unsustainable consumption of rich countries? Why did the Federal Reserve keep rates so low for so long? Why did financial firms make loans to people who had no income, no jobs, and no assets? Rajan, professor of finance at the University of Chicago and former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund, is uniquely qualified to answer these questions. He argues that serious flaws in a global economy overly dependent on the American consumer are to blame for the global financial crisis, not just a few greedy bankers. Using the geological metaphor of fault lines, he focuses on three interrelated factors: problems in the financial sector stemming from rising income inequality in the US and the political pressure it created for easy credit; trade imbalances between countries; and distortions created when different financial systems and types of government intervention interact. The author also discusses possible reforms of the financial sector and global trade. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

Economist Rajan warned about the global financial crisis long before it hit, and now he exposes the continuing peril to the world. Rajan traces the deepening fault lines in a system overly dependent on American consumption to power the world economy and stave off a global downturn.

Synopsis:

"Fault Lines provides an excellent analysis of the lessons to be learned from the financial crisis, and the difficult choices that lie ahead. Of the many books written in the wake of our recent economic meltdown, this is the one that gets it right."--George A. Akerlof, coauthor of Animal Spirits and Identity Economics

"Amidst the welter of books about our financial crisis, Rajan's book stands out for several reasons: the author's intellectual distinction, his academic and real-world involvement in the problems of finance and the macroeconomy, his global perspective, his search for the roots of the financial crisis in America's growing economic inequality, and also his prescience. In 2005, Rajan foresaw the coming financial collapse--and was fiercely criticized for his insight."--Richard A. Posner, author of A Failure of Capitalism: The Crisis of '08 and the Descent into Depression

"Beautifully clear, cogent, and highly readable. This is the best book out there on the global imbalances that gave us the last financial crisis and might well give us the next one."--Kenneth S. Rogoff, coauthor of This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly

Synopsis:

Raghuram Rajan was one of the few economists who warned of the global financial crisis before it hit. Now, as the world struggles to recover, it's tempting to blame what happened on just a few greedy bankers who took irrational risks and left the rest of us to foot the bill. In Fault Lines, Rajan argues that serious flaws in the economy are also to blame, and warns that a potentially more devastating crisis awaits us if they aren't fixed.

Rajan shows how the individual choices that collectively brought about the economic meltdown--made by bankers, government officials, and ordinary homeowners--were rational responses to a flawed global financial order in which the incentives to take on risk are incredibly out of step with the dangers those risks pose. He traces the deepening fault lines in a world overly dependent on the indebted American consumer to power global economic growth and stave off global downturns. He exposes a system where America's growing inequality and thin social safety net create tremendous political pressure to encourage easy credit and keep job creation robust, no matter what the consequences to the economy's long-term health; and where the U.S. financial sector, with its skewed incentives, is the critical but unstable link between an overstimulated America and an underconsuming world.

In Fault Lines, Rajan demonstrates how unequal access to education and health care in the United States puts us all in deeper financial peril, even as the economic choices of countries like Germany, Japan, and China place an undue burden on America to get its policies right. He outlines the hard choices we need to make to ensure a more stable world economy and restore lasting prosperity.

About the Author

Raghuram G. Rajan is the Eric J. Gleacher Distinguished Service Professor of Finance at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund. He is the coauthor of "Saving Capitalism from the Capitalists: Unleashing the Power of Financial Markets to Create Wealth and Spread Opportunity" (Princeton).

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Introduction 1

CHAPTER ONE: Let Them Eat Credit 21

CHAPTER TWO: Exporting to Grow 46

CHAPTER THREE: Flighty Foreign Financing 68

CHAPTER FOUR: A Weak Safety Net 83

CHAPTER FIVE: From Bubble to Bubble 101

CHAPTER SIX: When Money Is the Measure of All Worth 120

CHAPTER SEVEN: Betting the Bank 134

CHAPTER EIGHT: Reforming Finance 154

CHAPTER NINE: Improving Access to Opportunity in America 183

CHAPTER TEN: The Fable of the Bees Replayed 202

Epilogue 225

Notes 231

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691146836
Author:
Rajan, Raghuram G
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Author:
Rajan, Raghuram G.
Location:
Princeton
Subject:
Economics - General
Subject:
Public Policy - Economic Policy
Subject:
Economic Conditions
Subject:
United States Social conditions.
Subject:
Economic history - 21st century
Subject:
Economics
Subject:
Finance
Subject:
Political Science and International Relations
Subject:
Politics - General
Copyright:
Publication Date:
May 2010
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Economics » US Economy
History and Social Science » Politics » General

Fault Lines: How Hidden Fractures Still Threaten the World Economy Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$12.95 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691146836 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Rajan scoops Business Book prize. One of the few economists to see the financial crisis coming has won the Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year award. Raghuram Rajan collected the £30,000 ($47,000) prize for Fault Lines in New York on Wednesday." --
"Synopsis" by , Economist Rajan warned about the global financial crisis long before it hit, and now he exposes the continuing peril to the world. Rajan traces the deepening fault lines in a system overly dependent on American consumption to power the world economy and stave off a global downturn.
"Synopsis" by , "Fault Lines provides an excellent analysis of the lessons to be learned from the financial crisis, and the difficult choices that lie ahead. Of the many books written in the wake of our recent economic meltdown, this is the one that gets it right."--George A. Akerlof, coauthor of Animal Spirits and Identity Economics

"Amidst the welter of books about our financial crisis, Rajan's book stands out for several reasons: the author's intellectual distinction, his academic and real-world involvement in the problems of finance and the macroeconomy, his global perspective, his search for the roots of the financial crisis in America's growing economic inequality, and also his prescience. In 2005, Rajan foresaw the coming financial collapse--and was fiercely criticized for his insight."--Richard A. Posner, author of A Failure of Capitalism: The Crisis of '08 and the Descent into Depression

"Beautifully clear, cogent, and highly readable. This is the best book out there on the global imbalances that gave us the last financial crisis and might well give us the next one."--Kenneth S. Rogoff, coauthor of This Time Is Different: Eight Centuries of Financial Folly

"Synopsis" by , Raghuram Rajan was one of the few economists who warned of the global financial crisis before it hit. Now, as the world struggles to recover, it's tempting to blame what happened on just a few greedy bankers who took irrational risks and left the rest of us to foot the bill. In Fault Lines, Rajan argues that serious flaws in the economy are also to blame, and warns that a potentially more devastating crisis awaits us if they aren't fixed.

Rajan shows how the individual choices that collectively brought about the economic meltdown--made by bankers, government officials, and ordinary homeowners--were rational responses to a flawed global financial order in which the incentives to take on risk are incredibly out of step with the dangers those risks pose. He traces the deepening fault lines in a world overly dependent on the indebted American consumer to power global economic growth and stave off global downturns. He exposes a system where America's growing inequality and thin social safety net create tremendous political pressure to encourage easy credit and keep job creation robust, no matter what the consequences to the economy's long-term health; and where the U.S. financial sector, with its skewed incentives, is the critical but unstable link between an overstimulated America and an underconsuming world.

In Fault Lines, Rajan demonstrates how unequal access to education and health care in the United States puts us all in deeper financial peril, even as the economic choices of countries like Germany, Japan, and China place an undue burden on America to get its policies right. He outlines the hard choices we need to make to ensure a more stable world economy and restore lasting prosperity.

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