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Policy Note 2008/5 | October 2008

Will the Paulson Bailout Produce the Basis for Another Minsky Moment?

As the House Committee on Financial Services meets to hear the expert testimony of witnesses concerning the regulation of the financial system, the measures that have been introduced to support the system are laying the groundwork for a new domestic financial architecture. Hyman Minsky suggests that the basic principle behind any reformulation of the regulatory system should limit the size and activities of financial institutions, and should be dictated by the ability of supervisors, examiners, and regulators to understand the institutions’ operations. Following Minsky’s preference for bank holding company structures, Senior Scholar Jan Kregel proposes the creation of numerous types of subsidiaries within the holding company. The aim would be to limit each type of holding company to a range of activities that were sufficiently linked to their core function and to ensure that each company was small enough to be effectively managed and supervised.

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