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I have to admit I was a little disappointed. I was expecting Rajan, former IMF Chief Economist and current CBI governor to be much more original, "out there". Maybe it's because his book was written earlier, I can't help but think that I've read this same book several times before.
I enjoyed his description of French govt annuities in the 17th century as a form.of securitisation -- that was original. I also found intriguing the idea that the US is ultra-responsive to economic shocks because of the Bush I jobless recovery cautionary tale, exacerbated by the relatively poor safety net available to US workers. The rest, however, incmuding his discussion of the financial sector, left me a little meh.
Worth reading, though, as with everything by Raghuram Rajan.
The book takes several steps back from the financial crisis to consider underlying factors - fault lines - that contributed to the crisis. While he provides some suggested policy responses to prevent a recurrence, he does not address any responses to the down turn itself for which he has been criticized (e.g., Krugman and Well in their review in the New York Review of Books). However, that was not Rajan's intent.
Overall the book is far ranging, thoughtful and interesting. However, I largely turned off the audible version to read it myself as I found the reader to be ham-handed, monotonic and completely unengaging. Perhaps with another reader the previous reviewer would have been less critical.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
Although this book is well constructed, written, and read, it is far too complex for me to give it a high rating. I have read other books about the financial crisis and have a reasonable understanding of economics. I think to get full enjoyment out of this book a very high understanding of macro economics is needed because the ideas and theories are highly advanced.
This may be a contributing factor to why very few of the recommendations suggested here are being implemented by policymakers.
But I definitely will be reading this book again, even though I can't give it an open recommendation. If you have a reasonable level of economics understanding in advance plus a basic understanding of the 2008 financial collapse then this would be a good book for you.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful