For those who hold a deep interest in the workings of finance, today I have listened to an interesting historical perspective. In an online seminar presentation sponsored by the Certified Financial Analyst Institute, two leading finance experts from the Yale School of Management - William Goetzmann & K. Geert Rouwenhorst - look at the current crisis by providing some historical perspectives. By historical we are talking about heading back to Babylon 1600BC and then the first financial market crisis in the 1720s.
These two gentlemen have co-authored a book published in 2005 which looked at the history of finance. In today's seminar (presented at 4am Brisbane time - Don't worry I'm not that keen/obsessed, I listened to the recorded version) they look at the:
Background of the Current Crisis
Debt, 1600 B.C.
Solon of Athens
A Perpetual Debt for Public Works
First Financial Market
First Financial Market Crisis, 1720
The South Sea Bubble
Securitization of Mortgages
Mutual Fund Securitization: Eendragt Maakt Magt
Securitization of Lives: Annuities
The last 20 minutes of the presentation contains a question and answer segment looking at the current crisis.
The presenters conclude that this modern crisis is nothing new as similar events have been found in antiquity and that innovation outweighs the risk of crisis.
It is an interesting presentation for history buffs. You can find it by following the following link - Finance in Historical Perspective.