On the Brink: Inside the Race to Stop the Collapse of the Global Financial System

By Henry M. Paulson
Read by Dan Woren

15.07 Hours 02/01/2010 unabridged
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    ISBN: 9781600249143

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When Hank Paulson, the former CEO of Goldman Sachs, was appointed in 2006 to become the nation's next Secretary of the Treasury, he knew that his move from Wall Street to Washington would be daunting and challenging. But Paulson had no idea that a year later, he would find himself at the very epicenter of the world's most cataclysmic financial crisis since the Great Depression. Major institutions including Bear Stearns, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers, AIG, Merrill Lynch, and Citigroup, among others-all steeped in rich, longstanding tradition-literally teetered at the edge of collapse. Panic ensnared international markets. Worst of all, the credit crisis spread to all parts of the U.S. economy and grew more ominous with each passing day, destroying jobs across America and undermining the financial security millions of families had spent their lifetimes building. This was truly a once-in-a-lifetime economic nightmare. Events no one had thought possible were happening in quick succession, and people all over the globe were terrified that the continuing downward spiral would bring unprecedented chaos. All eyes turned to the United States Treasury Secretary to avert the disaster. This, then, is Hank Paulson's first-person account. From the man who was in the very middle of this perfect economic storm, ON THE BRINK is Paulson's fast-paced retelling of the key decisions that had to be made with lightning speed. Paulson puts the reader in the room for all the intense moments as he addressed urgent market conditions, weighed critical decisions, and debated policy and economic considerations with of all the notable players-including the CEOs of top Wall Street firms as well as Ben Bernanke, Timothy Geithner, Sheila Bair, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, and then-President George W. Bush. More than an account about numbers and credit risks gone bad, ON THE BRINK is an extraordinary story about people and politics-all brought together during the world's impending financial Armageddon.

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Summary

Summary

A New York Times Bestseller

When Hank Paulson, the former CEO of Goldman Sachs, was appointed in 2006 to become the nation's next Secretary of the Treasury, he knew that his move from Wall Street to Washington would be daunting and challenging.

But Paulson had no idea that a year later, he would find himself at the very epicenter of the world's most cataclysmic financial crisis since the Great Depression. Major institutions including Bear Stearns, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers, AIG, Merrill Lynch, and Citigroup, among others-all steeped in rich, longstanding tradition-literally teetered at the edge of collapse. Panic ensnared international markets. Worst of all, the credit crisis spread to all parts of the U.S. economy and grew more ominous with each passing day, destroying jobs across America and undermining the financial security millions of families had spent their lifetimes building.

This was truly a once-in-a-lifetime economic nightmare. Events no one had thought possible were happening in quick succession, and people all over the globe were terrified that the continuing downward spiral would bring unprecedented chaos. All eyes turned to the United States Treasury Secretary to avert the disaster.

This, then, is Hank Paulson's first-person account. From the man who was in the very middle of this perfect economic storm, ON THE BRINK is Paulson's fast-paced retelling of the key decisions that had to be made with lightning speed. Paulson puts the reader in the room for all the intense moments as he addressed urgent market conditions, weighed critical decisions, and debated policy and economic considerations with of all the notable players-including the CEOs of top Wall Street firms as well as Ben Bernanke, Timothy Geithner, Sheila Bair, Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frank, presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain, and then-President George W. Bush.

More than an account about numbers and credit risks gone bad, ON THE BRINK is an extraordinary story about people and politics-all brought together during the world's impending financial Armageddon.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

It takes someone with authority to narrate Hank Paulson's inside view of the 2008 collapse and attempted rescue of the global credit and equity markets. Dan Woren performs the task admirably. For financial-markets followers, this account by the Goldman Sachs CEO-turned-policy-maker is a must-listen. Paulson provides a fast-paced, surprisingly nonpartisan story of the nitty-gritty behind the decisions to save some financial institutions (and not others). AudioFile
“The primary, and sizable, contribution of this book is the inside view it affords of the often limited powers of the federal government.” New York Times Book Review
“The former US Treasury secretary gives a gripping account of how he battled to prevent complete meltdown in the financial system, with plenty of illuminating detail.” Financial Times
“In this fast-moving, insider’s account of “the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression,” [Paulson] tells his side of the story.” Publishers Weekly
“The facts as Paulson saw them. Drawing on phone call and meeting logs, Paulson offers a unique perspective on the recovery efforts and the thought processes of those involved in shoring up the world’s largest economy.” Bookmarks

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Henry M. Paulson

Henry M. Paulson served under President George W. Bush as the seventy-fourth secretary of the Treasury from June 2006 until January 2009. Before coming to the Treasury, he had been chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs since the firm’s initial public offering in 1999. He joined the Goldman Sachs Chicago office in 1974 and steadily rose through the ranks. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Paulson was a member of the White House Domestic Council, serving as staff assistant to the president from 1972 to 1973, and as staff assistant to the assistant secretary of defense at the Pentagon from 1970 to 1972. He graduated from Dartmouth in 1968, where he majored in English, was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, and was an All Ivy, All East football player. He received an MBA from Harvard in 1970.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download
Runtime: 15.07
Audience: Adult
Language: English