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This Element is an excerpt form Financial Shock: Global Panic and Government Bailouts--How We Got Here and What Must Be Done to Fix It (ISBN: 9780137016631) by Mark Zandi. Available in print and digital formats.
Pull back the curtain on the subprime mortgage collapse and discover what really happened.
To fully understand the subprime mortgage implosion, you need to know how subprime mortgages were financed. Fundamentally, loans either are financed directly by financial institutions such as commercial banks and thrift institutions or are repackaged as bonds (that is, securitized) and sold to investors, who keep or trade them. The overwhelming majority of subprime loans were securitized...