By Alistair Darling
In the summertime of overdue 2007, stocks of Northern Rock went into free-fall inflicting a run at the financial institution - the 1st because the nice melancholy. Northern Rock was once merely the 1st: within the resulting months, Alistair Darling stood enterprise within the eye of this ideal typhoon - around the globe monetary associations proposal 'too enormous to fail' have been falling prey to the deadly toxicity of the U.S. sub-prime loan industry. again from the threshold tells the gripping tale of 1 thousand days of difficulty. As Chancellor, Alistair Darling sanctioned the GBP37bn bailouts of RBS and HBoS simply mins sooner than their money machines may have ceased to operate; on the eleventh hour, he avoided Barclay's from buying Lehman Brothers, telling US Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson that he would not permit British banks to import America's financial melanoma; he used arguable laws to forestall Icelandic banks from chickening out cash from the united kingdom. From all evening conferences on the White apartment, to confrontations with the titans of foreign banking and fractions kinfolk with Gordon Brown, Darling areas the reader within the rooms the place the destinies of hundreds of thousands weighed seriously at the shoulders of some. again from the threshold is a gripping and instant account of an remarkable international monetary disaster. Alistair Darling's wisdom and figuring out make this not just a distinct point of view at the occasions that rocked international capitalism, yet an important and interesting historic rfile.
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Additional info for Back from the Brink: 1,000 Days at Number 11
It was Gordon, asking me to come back. He said, you must reassure people that their money is safe. I said I was not so sure they would believe that: there was something happening here that was all too reminiscent of the fuel crisis of 2000. At that time, because of a strike at oil refineries, people believed that the fuel pumps were about to run dry and huge queues formed. Then word spread that supermarkets might run out of food. We saw panic-buying, supermarket shelves stripped, as people came to believe that if they did not buy now they might starve.
A sunrise never felt so bleak. I knew the London markets were about to open and that they would react badly to the leaked news, however wrong it was. Iceland and its banking system were close to collapse and one of its banks would probably fail that day. In Ireland the day before they had, without warning, underwritten all the savings in their banks, causing disarray for everyone else in Europe. Three weeks earlier, in the United States, the collapse of Lehman Brothers, one of the country’s oldest banks, had pushed the rest of Wall Street to the edge.
We made the most of it. I knew I was going to be Chief Secretary because Gordon had asked me a couple of days before the election if I would serve in the job. It was no great surprise, then, when Tony repeated the offer in the Cabinet Room. I felt a bit overawed walking into that room for the first time. I was about to take a chair when Tony said: ‘There’s no need to sit. ’ From No. 10, ministers go in their shiny new cars to their departments. As I left the Cabinet Room, I was handed a folder by the Cabinet Secretary.