The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and Its Aftermath

The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and Its Aftermath

by Ben S. Bernanke


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A New York Times Bestseller

“A fascinating account of the effort to save the world from another [Great Depression]. . . . Humanity should be grateful.”—Financial Times

In 2006, Ben S. Bernanke was appointed chair of the Federal Reserve, the unexpected apex of a personal journey from small-town South Carolina to prestigious academic appointments and finally public service in Washington’s halls of power.

There would be no time to celebrate.

The bursting of a housing bubble in 2007 exposed the hidden vulnerabilities of the global financial system, bringing it to the brink of meltdown. From the implosion of the investment bank Bear Stearns to the unprecedented bailout of insurance giant AIG, efforts to arrest the financial contagion consumed Bernanke and his team at the Fed. Around the clock, they fought the crisis with every tool at their disposal to keep the United States and world economies afloat.

Working with two U.S. presidents, and under fire from a fractious Congress and a public incensed by behavior on Wall Street, the Fed—alongside colleagues in the Treasury Department—successfully stabilized a teetering financial system. With creativity and decisiveness, they prevented an economic collapse of unimaginable scale and went on to craft the unorthodox programs that would help revive the U.S. economy and become the model for other countries.

Rich with detail of the decision-making process in Washington and indelible portraits of the major players, The Courage to Act recounts and explains the worst financial crisis and economic slump in America since the Great Depression, providing an insider’s account of the policy response.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393353990
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 05/02/2017
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 640
Sales rank: 330,758
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Ben S. Bernanke served as chairman of the Federal Reserve from 2006 to 2014. He was named Time magazine's "Person of the Year" in 2009. Prior to his career in public service, he was a professor of economics at Princeton University.

Table of Contents

Author's Note vii

Prologue I Can Still Stop This … ix

Part I Prelude

Chapter 1 Main Street 3

Chapter 2 In the Groves of Academe 21

Chapter 3 Governor 43

Chapter 4 In the Maestro's Orchestra 66

Chapter 5 The Subprime Spark 82

Chapter 6 Rookie Season 107

Part II The Crisis

Chapter 7 First Tremors, First Response 133

Chapter 8 One Step Forward 159

Chapter 9 The End of the Beginning 176

Chapter 10 Bear Stearns: Before Asia Opens 198

Chapter 11 Fannie and Freddie: A Long, Hot Summer 226

Chapter 12 Lehman: The Dam Breaks 248

Chapter 13 AIG: "It Makes Me Angry" 270

Chapter 14 We Turn to Congress 292

Chapter 15 "Fifty Percent Hell No" 314

Chapter 16 A Cold Wind 336

Chapter 17 Transition 356

Chapter 18 From Financial Crisis to Economic Crisis 385

Part III Aftermath

Chapter 19 Quantitative Easing: The End of Orthodoxy 415

Chapter 20 Building a New Financial System 435

Chapter 21 QE2: False Dawn 467

Chapter 22 Headwinds 497

Chapter 23 Taper Capers 534

Epilogue: Looking Back, Looking Forward 565

Afterword to the Paperback Edition 581

Acknowledgments 595

A Note On Sources 599

Selected Bibliography 603

Index 605

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The Courage to Act: A Memoir of a Crisis and Its Aftermath 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
naveensreedevan More than 1 year ago
Federal reserve of america must stop cheating and fooling the public. America as a $50 trillion of financial debts. of which federal debt alone is 20 billion, agency,states, consumer and corporate has $30 trillion. USA has no major technology all money is being wasted or hidden in swiss and other tax haven. they are funding war with this dollars and its being billed to the rest of the world as inflation. the only way to stop this day light robbery and hard crimes is first rest of world ask all offices of world bank/un/imf to shut down in the next two years. no more UN outside usa. UN/UNHRC don't realise that pentagon is spending annually $700 billion all we see is killing in africa/afghan. Te first thing is for all citizen now this and then next step by next xmas is to take action against USa -d.c. and nato for war crimes. on what basis can Federal reserve allow America to build annually $1.3 trillion of debts? If America has technology to lunch about 1000 satellites( fake) and lunar mission(photoshoot) and space shuttle ( photoshop) then why their tech procuts not making money for them? why always investing for last 60 years? now do people get american lies. superliars. not superpowers of which 1 trillion is federal government- donald rump and co. i have an idea for mcdonald value meals for american cowards - donald's rump roasted for you with half baked beans for the gasholes who own gas guzzling suvs/humvees and other overrated car. ben next book title -courage to fart thru mouth
Anonymous More than 1 year ago