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January 22, 2008

World's Largest Bond Insurers Collapsing?

By George Washington

The mortgage and stock market crash is on everyone's lips. But a financial analyst says that the two largest bond insurers are also collapsing, which could have equally devastating effects on our financial system.


The Wall Street Journal on Friday said:

"The turmoil on Wall Street is beginning to rock a foundation of the financial system: the ability of institutions to make good on their many trades with one another.

"Today, a struggling bond insurer, ACA Financial Guaranty Corp., will ask its trading partners for more time as it scrambles to unwind more than $60 billion of insurance contracts it sold to financial firms but can't fully pay off, according to people familiar with the matter. The contracts were intended to protect Wall Street firms from losses on mortgage securities and other debt they own.

"The problem is that the insurer itself is teetering - with repercussions across the financial world."

But that's not the scariest part. According to a fairly well-known financial analyst, ACA Financial is a small-time player.  However, he says that the world's two largest bond insurers are also collapsing.

If he's right, the effects on the bond market may be even more serious than the mortgage and stock market crashes. 

Please read his article, check out his credentials, and then decide for yourself. 

Authors Bio:
George Washington

As a political activist for decades, I have rejoiced in victories for the people and mourned in defeats. I chose the pen name "George Washington" because - as Washington's biographies show - he wasn't a very good strategist, but he was incredibly persistent. He hung in again and again during the worst setbacks and bleakest winters for years. That is what made him great: he simply refused to quit. George Washington therefore inspires me to be a life-long activist.

As an attorney and former law school professor, I am a firm believer that no one - even the high and mighty - are above the law.

As someone trained in environmental systems analysis, I am always looking at how different trends influence each other ... and the big picture.