Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan write: This is the second in our Contours of Crisis paper series. The first article set the stage for the series. It began by outlining the conventional view that this is a finance-led crisis, that this turmoil was triggered and amplified by “financial excesses”; it then described the domino sequence of collapsing markets—a process that started with the meltdown of the U.S. housing and FIRE sectors (finance, insurance and real estate), expanded to the entire financial market, and eventually pulled down the so-called “real economy”; and, finally, it situated the pattern and magnitude of the current decline in historical context.

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