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Which crisis?

The Edge Singapore
The Edge Singapore9/10/2018 8:0 AM GMT+08  • 4 min read
Which crisis?
SINGAPORE (Sept 10): Ten years ago this month, reporters and editors at The Edge Singapore were sending a lot of text messages to one another in the dead of night. As the US was trying to contain its subprime mortgage crisis, just about all the news that
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SINGAPORE (Sept 10): Ten years ago this month, reporters and editors at The Edge Singapore were sending a lot of text messages to one another in the dead of night. As the US was trying to contain its subprime mortgage crisis, just about all the news that mattered to the Singapore market was breaking on the other side of the globe.

Looking back, it was not Lehman Brothers filing for bankruptcy on Sept 15, 2008 that incited the most chatter in our little group, though it certainly was a seminal moment in the story of the crisis. Instead, it was the ­almost-now-forgotten incident on Sept 29, 2008 of US lawmakers refusing to support a US$700 billion rescue package for financial institutions that had us fearing the end was nigh. One text message summed it up thus: “Armageddon cometh. Package shot down by US Republicans.”

This week, newspapers around the world will be observing the 10th anniversary of the financial crisis that many feared would tip the world into its deepest recession since the 1930s. It prompted major central banks and governments to mount a massive stimulus exercise that went on for years. And, despite the initial scepticism, it is fair to say that the programme worked. Global markets were buoyed by all the liquidity, and economic activity gradually recovered.

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