I caught an inflated television pundit criticizing public healthcare because, unlike smart corporate insurance, government will cover unhealthy lazy obese people with six drunk driving convictions to bankrupt our country.
Similarly, coffee shop pundits blame home buyers for the deep and global financial crash of an unwary Wall Street. The Cleveland Fed would like to blow up these opinions.
Unfortunately, many of the most popular explanations that have emerged for the subprime crisis are, to a large extent, myths.
Empirical research shows that the causes of the subprime mortgage crisis and its magnitude were more complicated than mortgage interest rate resets, declining underwriting standards, or declining home values. Nor were its causes unlike other crises of the past.
The subprime crisis was building for years before showing any signs and was fed by lending, securitization, leveraging, and housing booms.
It’s a sloppy habit to point unfounded blame. Worse, why accuse your neighbors?