Abstract

This article argues that the crisis of 2007–2008 happened because of an explosive combination of agency problems, moral hazard, and “scientism.” The authors analyze the varied behaviors, ideas and effects that in combination created a financial meltdown, and discuss the players responsible for the consequences. In formulating a set of expectations for future financial management, they suggest that financial agents need more “skin in the game” to prevent irresponsible risk-taking from continuing. This article argues that the crisis of 2007–2008 happened because of an explosive combination of agency problems, and “scientism”—the illusion that ostensibly scientific techniques would manage risks and predict rare events in spite of the stark empirical and theoretical realities that suggested otherwise. The authors analyze the varied behaviors, ideas and effects that in combination created a financial meltdown, and discuss the players responsible for the consequences. In formulating a set of expectations for future financial management, they suggest that financial agents need more “skin in the game” to prevent irresponsible risk-taking from continuing.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1945-4724
Print ISSN
1945-4716
Pages
pp. 49-60
Launched on MUSE
2012-05-10
Open Access
No
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