- May 2010: Vol. 22 No. 5

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Shop Talk: A Conversation with Michael Lewis

by Geoffrey Dohrmann

The Institutional Real Estate Letter – North America sat down with one-time bond trader, now full-time author Michael Lewis to talk about the collapse of the financial market, Wall Street’s day of reckoning and Lewis’ new book, The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, which takes a look at the few investors who bet against subprime loans in 2005, predicted the financial meltdown and made money in the process.

There have been a number of books written about the financial crisis. What compelled you to write The Big Short?

When I wrote Liar’s Poker, I thought that I was writing about a brief, traumatic event on Wall Street. Instead, what I had actually written was a description of the beginning of a 30-year-long traumatic event. I could see how [the most recent] financial crisis was really the natural conclusion of things I had written about back in 1989. I thought, “Geez, I’ve got to go back and finish the job.” Somewhat arrogantly, I felt it w

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