One of the most telling statistics...was a difference in how much investment a company made in CapEx, R&D, factories, and in worker training when you compared private companies with similar public ones. The private companies made twice the investments into the real economy as public companies did ... Private companies are out there investing under the same tax and regulatory frameworks. They see plenty of opportunities. But the public markets make it impossible

The biosphere and the “financiosphere” are both dazzling in their complexity, with striking similarities. Both are dynamic systems in which the selfish actions of countless individuals – whether they be cells or investors – lead to unpredictable consequences at the system level. In turn, these collective actions and consequences feed back to influence individual actions in endless cycles of adaptation and evolution.

At $26 trillion America’s housing stock is the largest asset class in the world, worth a little more than the country’s stockmarket. America’s mortgage-finance system, with $11 trillion of debt, is probably the biggest concentration of financial risk to be found anywhere. It is still closely linked to the global financial system, with $1 trillion of mortgage debt owned abroad. It has not gone unreformed in the ten years since it set off the most severe recession of modern times.

the biggest American banks, nearly eight years after the financial crisis, are still too big to fail ... two regulatory agencies pointed to the dangers created by the global reach and complexity of the largest banks, which are bigger now than they were before the 2008 crisis ... the plans put forward by five of the big banks, JPMorgan, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, State Street and Bank of New York Mellon, were “not credible or would not facilitate an orderly resolution under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.”

Perhaps the most important reason why our government has not done more to help the dispossessed...is that the people displaced by the foreclosure crisis do not yet command a political voice commensurate with their numbers ... After all, ten million displaced adults is potentially a big constituency ... greater than the total number of Americans who voted for all of the victorious Tea Party candidates for Congress in 2010 ... A voting bloc of this size might be expected to have some influence.

After the 2008 financial crisis, the U.S. Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act to discourage banks from growing excessively big and catastrophe-prone. Yet while the law crushed some smaller financial institutions, the largest banks — with operations spread across many countries — actually became even larger, amassing more capital and lending less. Today, the 10 biggest banks still control almost 50 percent of assets under management worldwide.

Iraq ...is now facing economic calamity brought on by the collapse in the price of oil, which accounts for more than 90 percent of the Iraqi government’s revenue ...Iraq, where nearly eight million people rely on a government salary or pension, will probably be forced to make crippling budget cuts. The economic shock, they fear, could lead to large-scale social unrest ...To pay its bills, the country is drawing on roughly $40 billion in reserves, which experts say will run out in 12 to 18 months

the perfect storm is the perfect cop-out. It precludes the possibility that people could have done better ... seductive because it speaks to the unnerving condition of living in a time when much of our well-being is tied up in vast, convoluted systems that few people comprehend ... seeing the failure of these systems as a kind of apocalyptic metaphorical weather rather than as the conscious failure of the regulators, executives and politicians who have been entrusted with power over our lives.

Seven years after the bursting of a global credit bubble resulted in the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, debt continues to grow. In fact, rather than reducing indebtedness, or deleveraging, all major economies today have higher levels of borrowing relative to GDP than they did in 2007 ... debt-to-GDP ratios have risen in all 22 advanced economies in the sample, by more than 50 percentage points in many cases

Tennessee banks are continuing to choose state-based regulators rather than federal authorities having primary oversight. It’s called a charter conversion. A dozen banks in the last five years dropped their national credentials to become state-chartered in Tennessee. It’s been a nationwide trend ever since the passage of financial reforms following the banking crisis... a study out of the University of Chicago found that state regulators consistently went easier on banks than federal authorities