September 14th, 2009
11:55 AM ET

Financial Dispatch: One Year Ago

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Gene Bloch
Managing Editor
CNN New York

It was the end of Wall Street as we knew it and the beginning of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. One year ago today it became clear Lehman Brothers – a storied investment bank saddled with billions of dollars in risky investments – could not find a buyer, would not be saved by the federal government, and would have to file for bankruptcy protection (note: the anniversary of the bankruptcy filing is September 15th).

As we mark the occasion, President Obama is scheduled to give a speech on the crisis today at Federal Hall, a stone’s throw from the New York Stock Exchange. Mr. Obama – in the 12:00 p.m. speech – is expected to talk about the Administration’s plan to wind down government involvement in the financial sector, to lay out a strong case for immediate action on regulatory reform, including dealing with the touchy “too big to fail” question, executive pay, and reiterate the importance of global coordination in preventing future crises.

We have full coverage of the speech and the Lehman anniversary today.

On Friday we told you about GM’s 60-day guarantee program – if you don’t like your GM car, take it back! – today, Ali Velshi interviews GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz for CNNMoney on that new program and how it might affect sales.

Gas prices continue to bounce around the $2.60 a gallon range. AAA reports the national average for a gallon of regular unleaded at $2.572 ($2.57 for graphics purposes), down one tenth of a cent from the previous day’s price. Gas is down 37 percent from its record high price in July 2008.

The credit crunch has eased somewhat, but loans can still be tough to come by. If you have the stomach for it, lending and borrowing from strangers on the internet is becoming a bigger business. Christine Romans has the story of the peer-to-peer lending boom.

On CNNMoney today:

Financial crisis: 1 year later

Obama still making the case to fix bank rules. A year after the big panic, the president is still pushing for new oversight. And he’ll make the case again Monday. But some fear an improving economy and health care focus may further slow momentum.

* The big windup. Obama today is set to talk about the government's plans for pulling out of bailouts. But even as some of the extraordinary programs created last year during the crisis retract, others aimed at boosting the economy are expanding

* Video: CNNMoney.com panel discussion on banking’s future with former Bear Stearns CEO Alan Schwartz and Citigroup chairman Dick Parsons

* Ranking the rescue. The collapse of Lehman led to a deeper recession and a litany of government programs. A CNNMoney.com interactive.

* Doctors quit medicine. Some physicians, fed up with the costs of their practice, are ready to hang up their stethoscopes and shift careers.

Filed under: Economy • Finance • Gene Bloch
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Fed Up

    The auto makers should have gone under too..........evil, greedy unions! Obama had to bail out the unions.

    September 14, 2009 at 6:19 pm |
  2. Annie Kate

    After reading the addition to this post on doctors quitting medicine,I can see why there is such an interest in including "tort reform" in the health care reform bill. For a doctor to have to not take a salary for 3 months of the year just to pay their malpractice insurance is the best indicator I have seen of just why tort reform is needed – plus the fact that many doctors are doing alternative careers – some making jewelry, etc. What a waste of medical training and talent. It sounds like eventually if we do not do anything about the rising cost of providing health care not only will our costs go up but our choices in doctors will go down. I don't think we can afford or want either.

    September 14, 2009 at 5:10 pm |
  3. Sabrina in Los Angeles

    I am glad that Leaman Brother's went bust and weren't bailed out.

    They gave poor advise that worked for them in the short term but screwed their clients.

    We lost millions to their bad advise. We wanted to cash out a good part of it but were advised to margin it and keep it in on the premise that every dime mow was a dollar later...every dollar then turned into a penny later.

    Evil, greedy Leaman Brother's is gone.

    September 14, 2009 at 2:42 pm |
  4. earle,florida

    This is just a side note for the uninformed,...."one year after the greatest stock market crash back in 1929, the market's were trading again at the same levels of pre-crash levels in 1930! Same scenario,just a different time-line revisited in our redundant capitalist history,good,or bad,you be the judge,...?

    September 14, 2009 at 2:08 pm |
  5. Gilby-HI

    How can Pres. Obama make any case for fixing anything in our country when CNN and the other Nets will not even show the public the ACORN activities that are done with Pres. Obama coulcel.

    Keeping the American public uninformed is why the poorest people in our country stay poor and uninformed.

    September 14, 2009 at 1:10 pm |