June 22, 2015

bearstearns080107Eight years ago, today was a Friday — June 22, 2007.

Along life’s timeline, a lot of dates accumulate on your own personal  calendar — birthdays, weddings, deaths, a shitload of less-important things — and some that are just weird.
A few maybe in the creepy category, too, usually dealing with an ex-wife, or the like, and the odd seemingly coincidental realized only by the passage of time.

(Illustration found here).

This particular day in 2007 was my first on a just-then, hired-on-the-spot job that would last more than seven years. Also on that specific day far, far away, the first foreshadowed-impulse of a calamitous financial explosion soon on the way.
One of my more interesting anniversaries, one which took three or four years to connect, and a personal-fun way of tying little details to a big picture.

Now a near-10-month-old retiree, I ended up managing Cask and Flask Liquors for the last five of those following years. The real-oddity in that first day of work there in 2007, was the hiring — a liquor store is not one of those businesses where you hire someone straight off the street and right-away put them behind the counter. Yet it turned into a good relationship for a long while.
And for background and details if you’d like, last year I posted the seventh anniversary of the event, and there’s the sixth one in 2013.

This would go down as a non-public, personal paycheck/financial information date, a ho-hum event, if I hadn’t spotted a same-day incident three/four years later — interesting:

On June 22, 2007, Bear Stearns pledged a collateralized loan of up to $3.2 billion to “bail out” one of its funds, the Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Fund, while negotiating with other banks to loan money against collateral to another fund, the Bear Stearns High-Grade Structured Credit Enhanced Leveraged Fund — from Wikipedia.

A little background from CNN Money:

The hedge funds’ troubles started in April, worsened in May, and by mid-June had become a full-blown crisis.
Even Bear’s injection of $1.6 billion couldn’t save them.
By mid-July both were next to worthless.
Less than three weeks later, the stock was way down, Spector was gone, and Bear was selling more than $2 billion in debt — both to shore up its balance sheet and to demonstrate that its assets were still valued.

And a slow collapse of economic life:

To oversimplify the Bear Stearns situation, the subprime mortgage-backed securities market behaved well outside of what the portfolio managers expected, which started a chain of events that imploded the fund.

Unfortunately, the Bear Stearns portfolio managers failed to expect these sorts of price movements and, therefore, had insufficient credit insurance to protect against these losses. Because they had leveraged their positions substantially, the funds began to experience large losses.
— online post Sep 6, 2007 at

Demise of Bear Stearns, considering the obscene amounts of so-called money sought after and thrown around near-random, was most-rapid and domino-like — in just more than a year, an 80-year-old “Most Admired” global investment bank worth billions simply ceased to exist.

A neat little anniversary, odd and topical, too.
In December 2007, a UK economics professor said if people don’t get their financial shit together, it’s gonna get bad, real bad: ‘“They still have another couple of months before this starts imploding. Things are very unstable and can move incredibly fast. I don’t think the central banks are going to make a major policy error, but if they do, this could make 1929 look like a walk in the park.”

And here we be…blow-back to a butterfly/werewolf effect…


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