Systemic threat
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Systemic threat

Thirty hours before the LTCM debacle hit the newswires Bill McDonough, chairman of the New York Fed, warned an audience of credit quants in London of a "situation which I regard by some considerable margin as the most dangerous since the Second World War". Of course the quants saw it as an attack on their credit models, which, obliquely, it was: which modeller had Meriwether on the radar screen? But McDonough may also have been referring to another threat to the US banking system: the move of Herbie, Euromoney's superbanker, who has been under his distant surveillance for nearly 20 years, back to Boot Hill headquarters in Arizona. David Shirreff

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