Posts filed under “Bailout Nation”
For those of you who are getting sick of hearing about the book, rejoice: The new site is launching tonight. All of the book related stuff will eventually find its way there. (Some will end up here in Books).
This is just the home page — it should populate over the next few days . . .
After this PR onslaught of the next few weeks passes, things may finally revert back to normal.
Felix Salmon asks an oddly interesting question: “As befits a book from such an assiduous source-citer as Ritholtz, Bailout Nation comes with 17 pages of endnotes, most of them with URLs. But here’s the funny thing: the number of blogs cited is tiny. Paging through the notes, I see Barry citing himself a couple of…Read More
I was pleasantly surprised this morning when I woke up to find the first review of Bailout Nation was written, by Eddy Elfenbein of Crossing Wall Street. It is very long and thoughtful and I am thrilled with it. Excerpt: In Bailout Nation: How Greed and Easy Money Corrupted Wall Street and Shook the World…Read More
Fascinating discussion with one of my favorite business writers: Roger Lowenstein on Charlie Rose, circa 1995 discussing Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist. I quote Lowenstein’s When Genius Failed extensively in Bailout Nation. I’d love to get a copy to him, but I cannot find his email address anywhere (except Portfolio, which is now…Read More
Now shipping: Bailout Nation I got about a dozen emails just like this one below last night from various friends around the country! > Greetings from Amazon.com. We thought you’d like to know that we shipped your items, and that this completes your order. You can track the status of this order, and all your…Read More
I just got the very first copy of Bailout Nation print copies from Wiley. It looks fucking fantastic. The first printing hit the warehouse today; They go out Monday to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders and bookstores everywhere. I am totally psyched! I have a bunch of promotions I am working with Wiley on —…Read More
The Chrysler bankruptcy is a fascinating development in the great financial crisis of 2008-09. It may be a enormously significant milestone in the evolution of the banking crisis and the response from the Obama administration. Or, it may be that autos and banks are perceived so differently in D.C. that not much can be read…Read More
A friend reminded me about this section of the book. This is an excerpt from early draft of Bailout Nation: How Greed and Easy Money Corrupted Wall Street and Shook the World Economy. Given the bankruptcy filing today, it is totally suitable. (The final version is thematically similar, but different in actual content).
The current no strings attached bailout demands of the Big 3 stands in stark contrast to the 1980 Chrysler deal. Regardless, the subsequent decades post-bailout reveals the deal wasn’t particularly good for either the industry or the firm’s employees.
In the 1950s, Barron’s described the Detroit automakers as the big two and a half – with Chrysler, the perennial sales laggard, as the half. When the embargo hit, Chrysler suffered the most of the Big Three.
By the mid-seventies, the company was hemorrhaging cash. Chrysler lost $52 million in 1974, and a record $259.5 million in 1975. As smaller, less expensive and more fuel-efficient from Japan and Europe gained increasing market share in 1970s, Chrysler found itself in an ever-deepening hole. It looked like they might have to declare bankruptcy.
As soon as the energy crisis ended, it was back to business as usual. 1976 a hugely profitable year: the company’s net income was $422.6 million. 1977 was profitable, but less so: $163.2 million net income. By late 1978, they were running in the red again, losing $204.6 million. The fall of the Shah of Iran and a new US Oil embargo sent prices higher once again. By 1979, Chrysler was looking at its first billion dollar annual loss.
Management decided to was time to visit their Uncle Sam.
“Ratings agencies just abjectly failed in serving the interests of investors.” -SEC Commissioner Kathleen Casey > Nice takedown on the highly conflicted, over rated ratings agencies in Bloomberg yesterday: “Investors, traders and regulators have been questioning whether credit rating companies serve a good purpose ever since Enron Corp. imploded in 2001. Until four days before…Read More