THE CREDIT CRISIS: 10 YEARS AND COUNTING RICK TOBIN RealtyTrac had published details about the worsening foreclosure situation in December 2006 just two months prior in which they noted that foreclosures had increased 35% between December 2005 and December 2006 over the period of 12 months. The rampant foreclosure pace reached 100,000 foreclosure filings per month between August 2006 and December 2006. Once the HSBC domino began to fall in February 2007, then the next financial dominoes to fall were just around the corner as noted by some of these key dates below: * April 3, 2007: New Century Financial (one of the best known subprime lenders nationwide that was based out of the Irvine, California region) files for bankruptcy protection. *June 2007: Two Bear Stearnsmanaged hedge funds that specialized in subprime mortgage pool investments began to run out of cash, and are forced to begin selling off assets at huge discounts for much needed new capital to survive. The financial problems from these hedge funds then spreads to other large financial firms on Wall Street that were some of the biggest investors such as JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Merrill Lynch, and Goldman Sachs. As a result, the two collapsing Bear Stearns investment funds had their own internal domino collapse that was spreading far and wide across Wall Street and Main Street. * August 9, 2007: The French bank named BNP Paribas informs their clients that they will not be able to take any money out of their investment funds that were partly tied to U.S. subprime mortgage pools since BNP Paribas could not estimate the current market value of the mortgage pool that held too many nonperforming mortgage loans. Due to the size of BNP Paribas and the importance to the rest of the European and global financial system, the European Central Bank (Europe’s version at the time of the Federal Reserve), the Federal Reserve, the Bank of Japan, and the Bank of Canada all begin to directly or indirectly try to flood the markets with more liquidity in order to save BNP Paribas from ending up insolvent and in bankruptcy court.