Just … Wow.

Found a link on the Marginal Revolution blog to Economics of Contempt blog:
http://economicsofcontempt.blogspot.com/2010/12/in-defense-of-dodd-frank-resolution.html

(Here is the Marginal Revolution link:
http://www.marginalrevolution.com/marginalrevolution/2010/12/one-paragraph-on-the-lehman-bankruptcy.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+marginalrevolution%2FhCQh+%28Marginal+Revolution%29 )

This is the money quote:

To take one example: Lehman’s holding company (LBHI) filed for bankruptcy, but at the last minute its US broker-dealer (LBI) was kept out of bankruptcy by the NY Fed. The problem was that no one knew about this — most people thought LBI had filed too. Lehman had all sorts of problems getting employees to even show up for work; JPMorgan, which was LBI’s clearing bank, unilaterally shut off LBI’s access to its accounts for several days, and actually started seizing assets of LBI’s prime brokerage clients (a huge no-no); clearinghouses improperly limited LBI’s trading activity; the NSCC mistakenly seized a large amount of LBI’s customer securities; Lehman’s European broker-dealer (LBIE) stopped payments to LBI’s omnibus account even though LBI continued to make payments to LBIE; incoming customer securities to LBI weren’t getting properly segregated; counterparties simply stopped posting collateral they owed on OTC derivatives with LBI; and so on. That first week, the biggest challenge was simply getting someone at Lehman on the phone. (I saw a 63-year-old senior partner do a fist-pump you’d have to see to believe when he finally got an account executive at Lehman on the phone. Unquestionably the highlight of my week.)

Like I said, just … Wow.
The comments below the Economics of Contempt post are worth reading, too (as of my writing this post they remain uninfected by comments from apocoholic zombie bears).

I saw someone once post that “bullshit travels at the speed of sound, while truth travels much more slowly” … something like that. Thanks goodness for posts like this from Economics of Contempt.

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