Friday, 22 February 2008

Subprime Primer: funny, spot on credit crunch 101

These "Subprime Primer" slides are a funny, simple, trenchant yet spot-on explanation of what caused the sub-prime housing mortgages problem which precipitated the current credit crunch (and a reminder that moral hazard lurks everywhere).

They've been doing the email rounds of people working in the financial markets, not surprisingly. I know they've nothing to do with technology, but as regular readers are aware I'm a great believer in things technical being explained clearly and simply to non-techies, and this is truly an example par excellence of how it ought to be done.

You don't have to be a financial whiz to understand what's behind the subprime mortgages crisis: these irreverent slides tell the story in a relatively jargon-free way and constitute a superb basic guide to what happened. Swear words warning - the drawings are work safe (no nudity of any kind) but the vulgarity used in places may be offensive to some!

I don't know who produced them - I notice they've been uploaded as a Google slideshow by The Big Picture, but they didn't actually create them. As there are so many copies of these slides around now, I thought it would be OK to put them on Slideshare for ease of sharing - but if whoever owns the copyright in them has an issue with that, please get in touch and I'll remove them. In fact I'd really love to know who wrote them as they're brilliant, but I suspect whoever it is probably wants to stay anonymous for job-preservation purposes! (You can rightclick on the slides to zoom in.)