Must-Read: The Worst Financial Disasters of All Time
This whole recession that we’re in has left us a bit mentally fractured. While he various news reports and talking heads on CNN are constantly reporting the demise of the dollar and the rise of tent cities around the country, when we look out the window we really don’t see much of a change. That could be because we don’t make enough money to really be affected by the economic downturn — we were already on the lower end of the spectrum, so losing a percentage of our income doesn’t seem as drastic as the six-figure folks on Wall Street losing theirs. Or it could be that the whole thing took such a long time to develop that we didn’t really notice it, kind of like hair growing out over a period of a year. Or it could be, as AskMen.com shows us, that it just really wasn’t that bad.
The folks over there have a pretty fascinating read on the top 10 financial crises of all time. It helps put things into a little bit of perspective. For example, here’s their entry on the Great Ruble Crisis of ’98:
Stricken by corruption, lacking an effective economic reform policy, the devaluation of the ruble and political instability sent Russia into a massive financial crisis as the millennium came to a close. Additionally, as the exporter of one-third of the world’s oil and natural gas reserves, Russia was extremely vulnerable to price fluctuations. When foreign investors pulled their money out of the country, the banks were crippled to such an extent that even an IMF loan was largely ineffective. Annual bond yields stood at a staggering 200%. The crisis also hit the Dow, which suffered one of its biggest point drops in history.
The whole thing is a good read. So head on over there and check it out.
About Rick Mosely Rick is the editor for TSB magazine.