It is seen as one of the most powerful, but also disastrous, products ever developed: Securitisations. By packaging and repackaging loans, bankers in the 1970’s and 80’s developed a technique that brought us incredible credits, but also the worst crisis since the 1930’s. It brought about the downfall of Lehman Brothers, previously regarded as untouchable, as well as many other banks. Countries faced bankruptcy and their societies were in some cases seriously disrupted. Securitisation caused a chain reaction of consequences that millions of people are now dealing with on a daily basis.
This makes it all the more striking that president Draghi of the European Central Bank not long ago announced to give the faltering securitisation market an injection of an estimated 50 billion euro, and openly pleas for the loosening of the strict rules that were introduced for this product after 2008. ARGOS spoke to bankers, regulators and experts, both on and off the record. Months of research were needed to get to the bottom of this secret world, which excels in specialist jargon and opaque structures.
In an in-depth reconstruction we expose how the magic potion of the financial world came about, how its miraculous powers lead to an unparalleled crisis and how the technique now seems to rise up again like a Phoenix from the flames.
Broadcasted on Radio 1, VPRO Radio, The Netherlands. Directed by Stefan Heijdendael, editing Jos lunel Verduyn
broadcast can be found here: http://argos.incontxt.nl/seizoenen/2014/afleveringen/21-06-2014/fragmenten/financieel-gif-als-medicijn