User Name: Password:      Register - Lost password?

Forex News Blog
Back to The Headlines
Monday September 22, 2008 - 13:22:54 GMT
FX Solutions -

Share This Story:
| | Email

A Brief History of the Financial Crisis

The outlines of the financial and credit crisis are clear though the blame will be argued and discussed far into the future.  Three primary causes played out over the past decade culminating in the tumultuous events of the past two weeks with the American Federal Government on Friday putting forth a plan to buy the housing based bad debt of the entire United States financial system. 


In the early part of this decade the Federal Reserve held interest rates at historically low levels for three years. In the mortgage industry increasingly lax credit standards were encouraged by government pressure to lend to marginal customers. Finally Wall Street firms became enamored of the profitability and supposed safety of their securitized credit derivative instruments, not only originating many products but also stocking their balance sheets with them. 


In the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks in 2001 the Federal Reserve cut the Fed Funds rate in half, to 1.75%.  The rate would stay below 2.0% for almost three years.  Those low nominal rates, negative in real inflation adjusted terms, stoked a building and buying boom in housing that developed into a huge speculative bubble. 


When the Fed brought rates back to 5.25% at the end of June 2006, the bubble began to deflate; the housing based credit crisis began a little more than a year later. Market bubbles always burst. Perhaps the fall of the housing market now seems preordained. But at the time the risk of the dicey mortgages spread throughout the financial system was disguised by the financially engineered instruments that had repackaged the questionable bits with higher quality debt, supposedly insuring the whole against default.


Starting in the closing years of the Clinton Administration the Community Redevelopment Act, a Carter Era program, was used to force banks to lend to mortgage customers formerly considered ineligible for loans. In pursuit of a social goal, universal home ownership, banks either lowered credit standards and granted mortgages or faced fines and business penalties for ‘redlining’.  Banks by and large complied with government dictates.


Two of the government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) in the mortgage field, the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) bought much of the bank mortgage debt and sold it back to the market with their implied government guarantee behind it.  The banks and loan companies used the cash obtained to sponsor more loans and keep the housing bubble inflating.  As with the banks, the GSEs also brought some of this debt onto their balance sheets.  All in all these two GSEs held title to or guaranteed upwards of 70% of residential mortgages in the United States. Their mortgage paper is endemic on the balance sheets of the world’s financial institutions.


The nozzle through which much of the air inflating the housing bubble passed was the asset backed collateralized debt obligation (CDO) fashioned by Wall Street’s leading investment houses and banks.  Combining different types and grades of debt in one instrument these complex securities were supposed to reduce risk of the whole below the level of the individual pieces.  Their complexity often rendered them opaque to the rating agencies whose rankings customers buying the securities relied on for risk measurement. Usually sold with default insurance these securities had one major flaw, their balance sheet value was assessed not by the value of the underlying income streams but by their sale price in the secondary market. If there were no market, if no one were willing to buy these securities, the theoretical book value fell to zero.


As the housing market stagnated and then fell, the value of those securities with housing components dropped as default rates on mortgages rose. But housing prices in the US have only declined on average about 20%. How could such a large but not catastrophic decline threaten the very foundations of the financial system?  The crux is the mark to market nature of the security. As the financial markets progressively lost faith in asset backed securities and as housing prices continued to fall bids for these securities became scarce.  The lower the prices for the securities the more capital the firm had to set aside to meet regulatory limits.  The firms that owned large amounts of these securities were caught in a downward spiral of devalued securities requiring ever large amounts of the firms capital for support which progressively undermined the worth of the firms stock and market confidence in the firm’s solvency which in turn demanded more capital support.


The United States has had market bubbles before, but none shook the financial system to its core and threatened the financial system. What has been different this time? The factor that levered a serious housing market bubble and collapse into a threat to the entire US and indeed world financial system was the asset-backed derivative.  These new and poorly understood instruments were embraced by the financial world for their touted safety and for their high return.  Yet their safety, the quality of their financial analysis and most importantly the underlying assumptions were completely untested.


Chief among the assumptions underpinning these derivative securities was the mark to market rule for valuation. Imposed by regulators in the aftermath of the failure of Enron it posits, natural enough in normal times, a functioning secondary market. Its purpose was to insure realistic pricing for securities.  All is fine with the rule unless there is no market.  As with the failure of Long Term Credit, it was the assumption that there will always be a functioning orderly market that was at fault.  Markets are not always rational, they are voluntary and they are psychological. People and firms do not have to participate. When enough market participants choose abstinence the market collapses and all calculations that depend on market pricing are void.


Markets are reflections of the faith and credit of their participants.  When that is lost no amount of financial engineering can make up for the loss of liquidity.  In a panic the market vanishes.  The asset backed derivative made the stability of the entire financial system beholden to its least stable component, the psychology of the market.  


Joseph Trevisani

Chief Market Analyst

FX Solutions

[email protected]


Forex Trading News

Forex Research

Daily Forex Market News
Forex news reports can be found on the forex research headlines page below. Here you will find real-time forex market news reports provided by respected contributors of currency trading information. Daily forex market news, weekly forex research and monthly forex news features can be found here.

Forex News
Real-time forex market news reports and features providing other currency trading information can be accessed by clicking on any of the headlines below. At the top of the forex blog page you will find the latest forex trading information. Scroll down the page if you are looking for less recent currency trading information. Scroll to the bottom of fx blog headlines and click on the link for past reports on forex. Currency world news reports from previous years can be found on the left sidebar under "FX Archives."

Actionable trading levels delivered to YOUR charts in real-time.

Register To Test Your Amazing Trader

GVI Trading. Potential Price Risk Scale
AA: Major, A: High, B: Medium

Tue 17 July 2018
AA 08:30 GB- Employment
A 13:15 US- Industrial Production
AA 14:00 US-Powell Testimony
Wed 18 July 2018
AA 08:30 GB- CPI
A 12:30 US- Housing Starts/Permits
AA 14:00 US-Powell Testimony
Thu 19 July 2018
AA 1:30 AU- Employment
AA 08:30 GB- Retail Sales
A 14:30 US- EIA Crude
A 12:30 US- Weekly Jobless
Fri 20 Jun 2018
A 12:30 CA- CPI/Retail Sales

John M. Bland, MBA
co-founding Partner,

Global-View Affiliate Program

We are starting an affiliate program to market some of our products.

Send me an email if you would be interested or if you know someone who would like to be an affiliate. Generous commissions payout for those accepted.

Put the word "affiliate" in the email subject line.

Contact us

Start trading with forex broker Markets Cube

Max McKegg's Daily Forex Trading Forecasts

Veteran FX Trader, Max McKegg, forecasts all the Major currencies and the Australasians; providing Daily and Medium Term Trading forecasts to subscribers, who include large Banks the world over, as well as individual traders in more than 30 different countries.

Request a TRIAL of Max's Forex Service.


Retail Forex Brokerage Changing!

Are you looking for your first broker or do you need of a new one? There are more critical things to consider than you might have thought.

We were trading long before there were online brokers. Global-View has been directly involved with the industry since its infancy. We've seen everything and are up-to-data with recent regulatory changes.

Our Best Brokers listing section includes:Forex Broker Reviews, Forex Broker Directory, Forex Broker Comparisons and advice on How to Choose a Forex Broker

If would like guidance, advice, or have any concerns at all ASK US. We are here to help you.

SEE Our Best Brokers List

Currency Trading Tools

  • Live rates, currency news, fx charts. 

  • Research reports and currency forecasts.

  • Foreign Exchange database and history.

  • Weekly economic calendar.

Directory of  Forex trading tools

Terms of Use    Disclaimer    Privacy Policy    Contact    Site Map

Forex Forum
Forex Trading Forum
Forex Forum + forex rates
Forex Forum Archives
Forex Forum RSS
Free Registration

Trading Forums
Currency Forum Guide
Forum Directory
Open Forum
Futures Forum
Political Forum
Forex Brokers
Compare Forex Brokers
Forex Broker News
Forex Broker Hotline

Online Forex Trading
Forex Trading Tools
Currency Trading Tools
Forex Database
FX Chart Points
Risk/Carry Trade Chart Points
Economic Calendar
Quicklinks to Economic Data
Currency Futures Swaps
Fibonacci Calculator
Currency Futures Calculator

Forex Education
Forex Learning Center
FX Trading Basics Course
Forex Trading Course
Forex Trading Handbook

Forex Analysis
Forex Forecasts
Interest Rate Forecasts
Central Bank Forecasts

FX Charts and Quotes
Live FX Rates
Live Global Market Quotes
Live Forex Charts
US Dollar Index Chart
Global Chart Gallery
Daily Market Tracker
Forex News
Forex Blog
Forex News
Forex Blog Archives
Forex News RSS
Forex Services
Forex Products
GVI Forex
Free Trials
FX Bookstore
FX Jobs and Careers
Jobs USA
Jobs UK
Jobs Canada

Forex Forum

The Global-View Forex Forum is the hub for currency trading on the web. Founded in 1996, it was the original forex forum and is still the place where forex traders around the globe come 24/7 looking for currency trading ideas, breaking forex news, fx trading rumors, fx flows and more. This is where you can find a full suite of forex trading tools, including a complete fx database, forex chart points, live currency rates, and live fx charts. In addition, there is a forex brokers directory where you can compare forex brokers. There is also a forex brokers hotline where you can ask for help choosing a forex broker that meets your individual fx trading needs. Interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading.

Forex News

The forex forum is where traders come to discuss the forex market. It is one of the few places where forex traders of all levels of experience, from novice to professionals, interact on the same venue to discuss forex trading. There is also the GVI Forex, which is a private subscription service where professional and experienced currency traders meet in a private forex forum. it is like a virtual forex trading room. This is open to forex traders of all levels of experience to view but only experienced currency tradingprofessionals can post.

Currency Trading

Currency trading charts are updated daily using the forex trading ranges posted in the Global-View forex database. You will also find technical indicators on the fx trading charts, e.g. moving averages for currencies such as the EURUSD. This is another forex trading tool provided by

Forex Brokers

The forex database can be used to access high, low, close daily forex ranges for key currency pairs, such as the EURUSD, USDJPY, USDCHF, GBPUSD, USDCAD, AUD, NZD and major crosses, including EURJPY, EURGBP, EURCHF, GBPJPY, GBPCHF and CHFJPY. Data for these currency trading pairs dating back to January 1, 1999 can be downloaded to an Excel spreadsheet.

Forex Trading

Forex chart points are in a currency trading table that includes; latest fx tradinghigh-low-close range, Bollinger Bands, Fibonacci retracement levels, daily forex pivot points support and resistance levels, average daily forex range, MACD for the different currency trading pairs. You can look on the forex forum for updates when one of the fx trading tools is updated.

FX Trading

Global-View also offers a full fx trading chart gallery that includes fx pairs, such as the EURUSD, commodities, stocks and bonds. In a fx trading world where markets are integrated, the chart gallery is a valuable trading tool. Look for updates on the Forex Forum when the chart gallery is updated.

Forex Blog also offers a forex blog, where articles of interest for currency trading are posted throughout the day. The forex blog articles come from outside sources, including forex brokers research as well as from the professionals at This forex blog includes the Daily Forex View, Market Chatter and technical forex blog updates. In additional to its real time forex forum, there are also Member Forums available for more in depth forex trading discussions.



By using this website, you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use, and Cookie Policy

Copyright ©1996-2014 Global-View. All Rights Reserved.
Hosting and Development by Blue 105