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How to better understand the financial crisis

Mark Latta
The list author says: "While getting my MBA, I was sitting in class one day and a question came up about how the financial crisis of 2008 occurred. My instructor, another MBA, a JD (and a littany of other letters) explained the financial crisis in about 45 minutes. My question to him was "Is there a good book that would further explain what you just said?" He pointed me to a "Infectious Greed." Every book in this list I stumbled on that helped to better understand the historical context of what set up the inevitable downfall in 2008 and 2009."
Broke, USA: From Pawnshops to Poverty, Inc.How the Working Poor Became Big Business
Broke, USA: From Pawnshops to Poverty, Inc.How the Working Poor Became Big Business
"This book explains how credit is used to capitalize on the poor.  "Broke, USA" outlines the rise of the subprime mortgate market and takes the reader on a Main Street view of how credit is essentially a transfer payment from those who have not to those who have.   A quick and interesting read, this is worth the purchase price."
Infectious Greed: How Deceit and Risk Corrupted the Financial Markets
Infectious Greed: How Deceit and Risk Corrupted the Financial Markets
"Basic reading for anyone who would like to understand how the derivatives market came to be and how it brought about a minor financial crisis in the mid-1990's.  This book also does a nice job of explaining the fall of Enron and MCI. Even if you read no other books, you will be much smarter if you read this one.  You'll read it and think, "How did we not see this coming?!""
Card Tricks: Bankers, Boomers and the Explosion of Plastic Credit
Card Tricks: Bankers, Boomers and the Explosion of Plastic Credit
"This book explains how we went from a country where the banks went from places that encouraged you to save to sellers of credit.   "Card Tricks" explains the rise of easy credit and America's growing hunger for even more credit power, almost to the point that credit is an expected birthright in America."
Too Big to Fail: The Inside Story of How Wall Street and Washington Fought to Save the Financial System---and Themselves
Too Big to Fail: The Inside Story of How Wall Street and Washington Fought to Save the Financial System---and Themselves
"During an interview with the author, I remember the book being described as almost a tell-all of back room conversations between top executives as the TARP became a reality. Weighing in at a massive number of pages, this book read like a drama.  You feel like you are hearing all the key players playing out each exchange.   Believe it or not, this one is a page-turner."
The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine
The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine
"My least favorite of these books, this one tells the story of a few that made money on the near-collapse of the financial system by realizing how crazy it had become.  Although disjointed in it's structure, this book does share the other side of the story where people made some nice change off the collapse of the financial markets."