Predicting a Heart Attack: The Fundamental Opacity of Extreme Liquidity Risk

73 Pages Posted: 19 Jul 2013  

William O. Fisher

University of Richmond - School of Law

Date Written: July 17, 2013

Abstract

After 150 years of business, Lehman Brothers ran out of cash and credit, and filed for bankruptcy on September 15, 2008. As a publicly traded company, Lehman had filed all the reports required by U.S. securities law. But the hundreds of pages of words and numbers provided no timely warning of lurking liquidity death. The risks of tri-party repurchase financing and the endgame Lehman would have to play if a self-magnifying credit drain hit were, as it turned out, inherently opaque. Disclosure, the traditional securities law “fix,” was destined to fail in this case, raising the question of whether it might fail in others as well.

JEL Classification: G18, G24, G28, K22

Suggested Citation

Fisher, William O., Predicting a Heart Attack: The Fundamental Opacity of Extreme Liquidity Risk (July 17, 2013). Temple Law Review, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2294965

William O. Fisher (Contact Author)

University of Richmond - School of Law ( email )

28 Westhampton Way
Richmond, VA 23173
United States
804-287-6450 (Phone)
804-289-8992 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://law.richmond.edu/people/faculty/bfisher/

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