Deconstructing the Financial Crisis
This chapter recounts a two-year Levin-Coburn investigation into key causes of the financial crisis. The investigation develops four case studies involving Goldman Sachs; Washington Mutual; the Office of Thrift Supervision; and Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s. Four hearings present the case studies, followed a year later by a 750-page Levin-Coburn report, the only bipartisan analysis of the financial crisis. The chapter recounts how the investigation helped end a filibuster of the Dodd-Frank Act which enacted such reforms as curbs on high-risk bank activities and abusive mortgages, creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and a prohibition on banks selling clients deficient financial products and then profiting from those products’ failure.