London Calling, A.I.G. Financial Products

In Economy on December 23, 2009 at 11:08 AM

Eliot Spitzer, former attorney general and governor of New York, Frank Partnoy, professor of law at the University of San Diego and William Black, professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City, are collectively pressing for release of A.I.G. documents, e-mails and kitchen sinks related to counterparties information spanning the 2007-to-present recession period.

Last Thursday, Show Us the E-Mail,  the op-ed, appeared in The New York Times. The piece is worth reading because it showcases economics and law on display working together, it offers a critique of the pivotal, larger bailout intervention undertaken by the federal government during the entire financial crisis.

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke once described A.I.G. as the most “angry” he had been over the entire crisis, comments issued when he spoke before 60 Minutes back on March 15, 2009.

A.I.G. Financial Products, based in London, is described in the op-ed —

“A.I.G. was at the center of the web of bad business judgments, opaque financial derivatives, failed economics and questionable political relationships that set off the economic cataclysm of the past two years. When A.I.G.’s financial products division collapsed — ultimately requiring a federal bailout of $180 billion — those who had been prospering from A.I.G.’s schemes scurried for taxpayer cover. Yet, more than a year after the rescue began, crucial questions remain unanswered. Who knew what, and when? Who benefited, and by exactly how much? Would A.I.G.’s counterparties have failed without taxpayer support?”

Bloomberg News reporting on the liquidy funding of A.I.G., C-SPAN covering Chairman Bernanke’s recent re-nomination hearings before Congress and reporter Michael Lewis’ commentary from Vanity Fair in August 2009, offer further elaboration.

Read, respectively, —

  1. New York Fed’s Secret Choice to Pay for Swaps Hits Taxpayers
  2. Federal Reserve Chairman Hearing
  3. The Man Who Crashed the World

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: