Magazine article Foreign Affairs

Recent Books: Economic, Social, and Environmental: Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises

Magazine article Foreign Affairs

Recent Books: Economic, Social, and Environmental: Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises

Article excerpt

Economic, Social, and Environmental Richard N. Cooper Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises BY TIMOTHY F. GEITHNER. Crown, 2014, 592 pp. $35.00 (paper, $18.00).

The financial crisis of 2008 was the worst the United States had faced since 1930. At the time, Geithner was the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York; the following year, he become treasury secretary. Along with Ben Bernanke, then chair of the U.S. Federal Reserve, and Henry Paulson, then treasury secretary, Geithner took the lead in preventing the crisis from creating another Great Depression-which it very well could have done. He recounts those harrowing days in clear and gripping prose and persuasively justifies the often unpopular actions the federal government took, arguing that they were the least bad options available in a potentially catastrophic situation. He shreds the common charge that during the crisis, he was biased in favor of the big banks and valued Wall Street over Main Street. …

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