Nobody could have seen it coming. That was the get-out-of-jail-free card played by bankers and banking watchdogs alike in the wake of the credit crisis that brought the global financial system to its knees. Yet that protestation actually convicts the financial community rather than excuses it. Nobody could have seen it coming because nobody had made enough effort to develop mathematical models capable of predicting the ramifications of their increasingly baroque investment decisions.
In fact, more than a few people did see it coming. Many observers of the market over the past two decades knew the situation couldn’t last forever, even if they didn’t know exactly how or when it would end. A few were more specific in their suspicions. James Owen Weatherall