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Capitalizing on Crisis: The Political Origins of the Rise of Finance Hardcover – March 17, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press (March 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0674050843
  • ISBN-13: 978-0674050846
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #987,706 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

With Capitalizing on Crisis, we finally have a persuasive account of the roots of the 2007-2008 financial disaster. While most studies focus on the proximate causes, Krippner makes sense of the dramatic expansion over decades of the financial sector of the U.S. economy. She explains brilliantly how and why government officials encouraged financialization as a way to solve the most vexing problems of our political economy. (Fred Block, University of California at Davis)

In this wonderfully researched and tightly argued book, Greta Krippner shows how the expansion of the financial sector in the United States not only helped delay the 'day of reckoning' for spendthrift American households, corporations and government, but also conveniently depoliticized the distributional conflicts that had plagued the nation since the 1960s. Nobody expected these providential outcomes, not even the policymakers who had opened up this space for finance in a rather ad hoc fashion, through repeated efforts to fend off crisis. By the end of the process however, the markets were in charge, and government officials were only too happy --and relieved-- to follow their lead. Capitalizing on Crisis is an absolute must read for anyone who cares to understand the origins of our current financial quagmire and the distributional dilemmas that policymakers inevitably and uncomfortably face. (Marion Fourcade, University of California, Berkeley)

Amidst the tsunami of books coming out in the wake of the recent financial crisis, Krippner's work stands out for its unusual approach. Rather than addressing the venality and incompetence of those with responsibility for regulating the economy, Krippner tells the history of the growth of financialization from the perspective of the regulators...In her account, the regulators were searching for ad hoc responses to what were deeper, perhaps even intractable problems. The high point of the book is her magnificent analysis of the erosion of Regulation Q, in which regulators cracked open the door to financial deregulation, unleashing the massive deregulation that came later. (M. Perelman Choice 2011-09-01)

About the Author

Greta Krippner is Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Michigan.

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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Matt Stoller on February 16, 2014
Format: Paperback
The thesis behind this book is that the rise of finance in America in the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s was a result of inadvertent missteps by policymakers who were dealing with the fiscal, political and social problems of the 1960s. Rather than claiming that deregulation and financialization were a plot of the Reagan era, or that it all started with the repeal of Glass-Steagall in 1999 or Enron in the early 2000s, and leaving it at that, Krippner did the work to figure out the political pressures under which policymakers were operating at the time the New Deal financial order was falling apart. She read every Fed Open Market Committee meeting transcript, thousands of pages of them. She read every Congressional hearing on credit over several decades. And it shows.

Krippner describes why the old system fell apart, which was necessary for today's financialized political economy to emerge. I don't buy everything she says, but this book deserves the attention of anyone who is seriously interested in what happened and how to move our culture away from the bubble and fraud prone financial order in which we find ourselves.

My full review is here: [...]
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
There are many books about the reentry broadly into American life of a more acute risk-and-reward financialization, starting loosely in the 1970s. Personal finance has been deeply affected, so this is quite close to home for Americans at all wealth levels.This book very helpfully presents many nuts and bolts, particulars in policy actions, showing how and why that happened, stage by stage, from the onset of inflation into the 2000s. The motives of policymakers at each stage are skillfully described. This is a narrative we are still living, in full swing, as one can see various vogues of financialization being applied, then gradually losing effectiveness, replacing the managed, redistributive society of earlier days as the latter (and the mid 20th century social contract it implied) decays, and policymakers try to satisfy voters and preserve popular illusions of the American dream.
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0 of 27 people found the following review helpful By jordan on August 5, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I plane to read it for school and I will write a better review later once the class is over.
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