A poll by the Initiative on Global Markets at the Booth School of Business shows that leading economists view 'flawed financial sector regulation and supervision' as the most important factor that contributed to the credit crunch of 2008.
Academic experts were responding to the question: "please rate the importance (0 = none; 5 = highest) of each item below (presented to panellists in a randomised order) in contributing to the 2008 global financial crisis."
Their answers were:
- Flawed financial sector regulation and supervision: Europe 4.36; US 4.32; all respondents 4.34.
- Underestimated risks (financial engineering): Europe 4.19; US 3.97; all respondents 4.08.
- Mortgages - fraud and bad incentives: Europe 3.76; US 3.73; all respondents 3.74.
- Funding runs (ST liabilities): Europe 3.78; US 3.60; all respondents 3.69.
- Rating agency failures: Europe 3.69; US 3.66; all respondents 3.67.
- Housing-price beliefs: Europe 3.59; US 3.66; all respondents 3.62.
- Household debt levels: Europe 3.06; US 3.11; all respondents 3.08.
- Too-big-to-fail beliefs: Europe 2.84; US 2.67; all respondents 2.75.
- Government subsidies - mortgages and home owning: Europe 2.21; US 2.43; all respondents 2.33.
- Savings and investment imbalances: Europe 2.36; US 2.07; all respondents 2.23.
- Loose monetary policy: Europe 2.06; US 1.97; all respondents 2.01.
- Fair-value accounting: Europe 1.74; US 1.82; all respondents 1.78.
"Inadequate or flawed regulation, supervision, or both" pertained to the financial sector (which includes financial infrastructure, banks, shadow banks, and interconnections in the system).
The Booth School of Business is in Chicago.