"Originally written for a conference of the Federal Reserve, Gary Gorton's "The Panic of 2007" garnered enormous attention and is considered by many to be the most convincing take on the recent economic meltdown. Now,in Slapped by the Invisible Rand, Gorton builds upon this seminal work, explaining how the securitized banking system, the nexus of financial markets and instruments unknown to most people, stands at the heart of the financial crisis." "Gorton shows that the Panic of 2007 was not so different from the Panic of 1907 or 1893, except that, in 2007, most people had never heard of the markets that were involved and didn't know how they worked or what their purposes were. Terms such as "subprime mortgage." "asset-backed commercial paper conduit," "structured investment vehicle," "credit derivative," "securitization," and "repo market" were meaningless." "In this volume, Gorton makes these complicated features and their impact crystal clear. He shows that the securitized banking system is, in fact, a real banking system, allowing institutional investors and firms to make enormous short-term deposits. But as with any banking system, it was vulnerable to a panic. Indeed, the events starting in August 2007 can best be understood not as a retail panic involving individuals but as a wholesale panic involving institutions, where large financial firms "ran" on other financial firms, making the system insolvent."--BOOK JACKET.