Principal Players in the Mortgage Wars Story

Hank Paulsen, secretary of the Treasury, 2006 to 2009. His decision to nationalize Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in September 2008 arguably triggered the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, which ignited the financial crisis. Along with Ben Bernanke, he worked tirelessly in the fall and winter of 2008 to contain the effects of the meltdown.

Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, 2005 to 2013. After being slow to recognize the extent of the problems in the mortgage market, he led the Fed’s response to the rapidly deteriorating financial crisis, adding massive amounts of liquidity to the system to keep it functioning.

David Maxwell, chairman and CEO of Fannie Mae, 1981 to 1991. He took over a Fannie ...

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