We Are Sixteen Years Old

Thank you for your readership and participation! And there are so many many people to whom we are very grateful for their help and encouraging words over the years.

Back when we started this site, in 2006, a careful reader of the Financial Times and Bloomberg could discern that across all credit markets, there was a frenzy of investor buying, which was then called the “wall of liquidity” that was likely to end badly. The New York Times and Wall Street Journal weren’t even giving hints. I thought some might want to know about that and so started writing. I set McKinsey-type targets, of having to reach a certain number of readers a day at the six, twelve, eighteen and twenty-four month point to justify continuing to post. Each time, it looked like I was falling way short. But then a new wheel would fall off the financial system and my readership would spike just in time.

So many have provided invaluable advice as well as financial support that I any list runs the risk of offending by omitting important people. So an inevitably partial record, focusing on the early years. Mark Thoma and Paul Krugman both helped get us on the map by referring to our work. In the feisty days of the econoblogopshere, we’d often discuss among ourselves what was happening to try to find out what was really going on, particularly since too many regulators seems to be clueless as opposed to trying to cover up. Ed Harrison (who also helped cover the site when I was on book leave), Felix Salmon, Barry Ritholtz, Steve Waldman, Brad Stester, and Nouriel Roubini (who would not interact much via his writing but would invite financial bloggers in the New York area to very nice lunches from time to time) were all turning over rocks looking for creepy-crawlies.

Later, when we turned to the understanding CDOs, which then led to chain of title abuses, our guide was securitization maven Tom Adams, and later pioneering foreclosure defense attorneys Nick Wooten and Bubba Grimsely. Tom was also a key figure on a foreclosure fraud listserv run by key ally and then Congressional staffer Matt Stoller, which had participants ranging from foreclosure activists like Lisa Epstein to law professor Adam Levitin and state attorneys general staff members.

CalPERS was there from the beginning. Our first post was about how CalPERS own statements about hedge funds, which as of 2006 were recognized not to be delivering “alpha,” meaning excess returns due to investor skill (and any differentiated return profile could be created at much lower cost than “two and twenty”), meant they should stop investing in hedge funds. CalPERS rocked the hedge fund industry when it formally renounced hedge fund investing….six years later. Sadly, although we scored some important wins, forcing the departure of its Chief Investment Officer Ben Meng and earlier, its Chief Financial Officer Charles Ausbonten, as well as playing a major role in thwarting a scheme to outsource private equity investing, CalPERS has succeed in building even higher walls, getting its union allies to spend $400,000 in contested board elections to prevent pro-transparency candidates from getting a seat.

And many thanks to those who have given us advice and support over the years, such as Tom Ferguson, Doug Smith, and Richard Vague (who made sure we were included in warm-up act in the annual Atlantic Economic Conference, which also gave us the opportunity to see some, erm, notables at close range). We were also very gratified to have appeared on the Bill Moyer show and Harry Shearer’s Le Show, both of whom are terrific interviewers. We also were gratified to have an opportunity to spread the word about Modern Monetary Theory from its leading thinkers: Randy Wray, Stephanie Kelton, Warren Mosler, Pavlina Tcherneva, Scott Fulweiler, as well as other supporters such as Marshall Auerback and Bill Black.

And to our many writers! Lambert who remains a mainstay of the site and the fondly remembered Jerri-Lynn Scofield; our important guest writers, who have included Michael Hudson, Hubert Horan, the aforementioned Matt Stoller and Tom Adams, derivatives maven Satyajit Das, Richard Smith, Outis Philalithopoulos, Clive, Philip Pilkington, and our new regulars Nicholas Corbishley, Conor Gallagher, and KLG. And last but far from least, our crackerjack moderation team: Jules, Katiebird and semper loquitur.

If you’d like to help, you can always send Antidote du Jour and link suggestions to yves-at-nakedcapitalism-dot-com, contribute via the Tip Jar (we do a lot with very little and every bit more helps) and by getting the word out by sharing posts with friends, family, and colleagues.

On to a new year! Best wished to all for 2023!

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  1. Val

    Debts that cannot be repaid…and I certainly owe NC a debt I cannot repay. All I can offer is my complete gratitude and admiration. Thank you so very much for your work.

  2. Altandmain

    Congratulations on your anniversary!

    I’m glad to see that there have been so many writers over the years with different views.

    It has been quite remarkable seeing NC challenge the mainstream media.

  3. PlutoniumKun

    Wow, sweet 16! Congrats on this milestone. For a decade now NC has been my primary source on information on world and economic affairs, nothing else matches it. Best wishes and seasons greetings to all involved, above and below the line.

  4. The Rev Kev

    I can only imagine Yves clicking OK to bring this site online sixteen years ago while wondering where it would all go or if it would even take off. Many congrats for being one of the few sites still left that on the net that you fill find reason and common sense still ruling the roost. It’s like a beacon in the night over a very dark landscape. So how about some music for the occasion-

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLBi0X9vTAE (2:43 mins)

  5. DJG, Reality Czar


    I’m trying to figure out when I wandered in. You were also getting recommendations from Charlie Pierce at Esquire and Duncan Black from Eschaton during the 2008-09 financial crisis. They were my access to Naked Capitalism.

    Why, it seems only yesterday that we collectively were in one financial crisis (after another). Considering the fantasy state that most economists live in, the Tulipmania of gadgets like Twitter and cryptocurrencies, and the constant abuse of power by the self-righteous mighty, you’ll always have a job.

    All the best.

    1. Lambert Strether

      > You were also getting recommendations from Charlie Pierce at Esquire and Duncan Black from Eschaton during the 2008-09 financial crisis.

      I found NC through Eschaton -> The Big Picture (Ritholtz).

      Obama had won, and I was looking for something else to do…

        1. John Zelnicker

          I’m not sure exactly how I got here in about 2008 or 2009, but I started digging into finance and economics with Pragmatic Capitalism and through that and other blogs whose names I can’t remember finally found the best one on the ‘net.

          For me, one of the very best features is the commentariat. Nowhere else that I’ve found can I learn as much from the comments as from the original post. Not only that, but the discussions are (mostly) rational, reasonable, and without the trolls and bad actors who inhabit so much of the blogosphere. My highest compliments for the best moderation evah.

          Edit: First time I’ve been caught by moderation in many months. Apologies for adding to the workload.

        2. Samuel Conner

          > Calculated Risk

          Me too. I started reading CR in the run-up to the sub-prime crisis, circa 2006. Bill McB was, I think, pretty picky about who he admitted to his ‘blogroll. NC made the cut and although I haven’t been to the CR site in a long time, I am enduringly grateful to CR for pointing me in the direction of NC.

          Yves, Lambert and everyone — stay well. You will be needed for a long time to come.

      1. DJG, Reality Czar

        Lambert Strether: When I arrived, you were already here, so that moves me to late 2009 (???). Funny, too, I had dipped into Corrente now and again during the same time.

        Water Cooler was in place when I got here, although you hadn’t yet evolved into an avatar of Śiva.

  6. David in Santa Cruz

    Happy Sweet Sixteen!

    I’ve come here daily for news and analysis for well over a decade and this little enterprise has quite literally changed my life.

  7. caucus99percenter

    According to Mormon historians, upon touching down by the waters of Utah’s Great Salt Lake, church leader Brigham Young said these words to his flock of Latter-Day Saints: “This is the place.”

    And that’s what I said to myself a few years ago upon discovering NC, and is what I still say with gratitude now: This is the place.

  8. c_heale

    I’ve been reading this site for a long time, not sixteen years but probably not far off it. It is the best news site on the Internet.

    I hope it lasts many, many more years.

    You’ve made a difference to my life and probably to many other people’s lives.

    Thank you.

    1. lyman alpha blob

      Seconded. Don’t remember exactly when I started reading here, but I believe it was before Water Cooler started. I used to read several different sites every day, and then found that NC linked to most of them anyway, so the news aggregation made things easier while still allowing me to give traffic to other sites through the links.

      Thank you for the oasis of sanity.

  9. FreeMarketApologist

    I came to NC via Barry Ritholtz, circa mid-2008. NC helped educate me on the details of the complex products involved in the financial crisis (I’m just a simple equities guy), and has been a mainstay of my financial news ever since.

    A big ‘happy birthday’ to NC, and a big thank you to Yves for the inspiration and skills to create, nurture, and expand NC’s scope and reach.

    1. Carolinian

      I came to NC via Barry Ritholtz

      Same here. Congratulations to what some of us like to think of as a blog about ideas. You have even captured the readership of one as financially dumb as yours truly. We are here to learn–and have.

    2. shinola

      Another one here pointed this way via Ritholtz – a big thank you to Barry!

      NC is now a daily must read. Thank you to Yves, Lambert, JLS & all the others who keep this blog up & running.

  10. Mucho

    I can’t remember when I started reading Naked Capitalism: must be more than a decade ago. I guess for me it feels like one of those things that seem to have been my mental life forever – a necessary point of reality – so that I can’t really remember a time that I didn’t know about it.

  11. Barry

    Yves, you’ve always been the rational, knowledgable sage in a sea of noise and nonsense. I was lucky to find NC in 2008 during the crash, and you’ve been a part of my morning routine ever since. Thank you so much, you’ve been tremendous in helping to understand the world around us.

  12. griffen

    Congratulations on the 16 year mark. So grateful to have found the site, after at first spending some time circa 2007 – 2009 on a competing but much less sane financial site. So very appreciative of the hard work, from the logging of the multiple and varied narratives to track to all of the necessary moderation. Onward and upward.

  13. bassmule

    I, too, found NC via Ritholtz’ Big Picture, sometime in 2009. This has always been a place where you could read about the dark underside of the US economy, and in recent years, a safe haven from an increasingly fanciful–deceitful might be a better word–MSM. We’ve had a lot of lyric writing in the past months–here’s my choice for a theme song, written by Dave Frishberg:
    Marooned, Marooned, Marooned, In a Blizzard of LIes.

  14. Wukchumni

    Happy Birthday NC!

    Like an avid golfer, I almost always hit the links @ 4 am p.s.t. in search of interesting stuff and pearls of wisdom in the strand.

    Critical thinking is rare these days, politics has consumed so much of the oxygen in the room leading us down a divided primrose path-but not here, here!

  15. Dalepues

    A comment at Sadly, No! sent me here around 2012, maybe a little earlier.
    I didn’t know of course that such a place as this even existed on the internet.
    So many things that I suspected about the government, the economy, everything really,
    were being discussed rationally here. I can’t contribute much in the way of comment,
    but I truly admire the level of knowledge and the even temperament of the people here.
    Thank you very much. Happy birthday.

  16. OIFVet

    16? NC is the most mature teenager that I know and I know a few, I teach 108 of them :) Happy Birthday NC and thank you Yves and Lambert for creating this amazing community!

  17. mrsyk

    Happy Birthday NC! Thank you sixteen times and may there be many more. I first wandered here in early 2008, the path provided via the blogroll at Calculated Risk. At the time I was in charge of the back office at a boutique fixed income investment advisor. NC became, and still is, my first read of the day.
    It’s a luxury to have well crafted opinions and curated (I hate that term) links from this team of critical thinkers. I would especially like to point out that it is a luxury to have a commentariat second to none. Thank you moderators and thank you Yves for always recognizing the value of this. (Anyone remember Zero Hedge? Early on, they had an excellent, well informed comments section.)
    So yes, Happy Anniversary.

  18. Stanley Dundee

    Perhaps some thanks also due to the great Michael Hudson for periodically gracing these pages with his wisdom and foresight! Happy birthday to NC and wishes for many more!

  19. Rod

    Happy 16th Birthday. What a Party.
    And the gifts and treats…just for showing up
    Thanks for everyone who made and makes what I get on my end so beneficial.
    Happy Birthday indeed.
    Following that Link on Epicurean Dealmaker (itself over my head) turned out a Top Ten decision on my part.
    And hoping for the many more.
    Thanks and thanks again.

  20. ambrit

    Has it been that long already? This site feels like home now. I seem to remember being steered here by something over at Paul Krugman’s column at the NYT of all places.
    It is a sign of the times that I wax nostalgic about the 2008 financial crash. (And the Chorus chants in the background: “Good times. Good times. Once we had faith in the Gods. Alas, no more.”)
    Stay safe all, wherever you end up.

  21. orlbucfan

    Kudos to Yves, Lambert, everyone else, and a most excellent commentariat!! 16 years….wowsers!!!! May there be many, many more. I was turned on to this site by other knowledgeable Progressive folks whom I highly respected for their astute explanations of white collar financial crime. And it has paid off in major spades!!! Thank you, Naked Capitalism!

  22. Wukchumni

    …put another candle on your birthday suit, your birthday suit, you’re another year old today…

    Put Another Candle On My Birthday Cake – Sheriff John

    (LA toddlers in the 60’s such as yours truly were enthralled by the very first law enforcement officer any of us had ever seen, even if he wasn’t one)


  23. barefoot charley

    I’m the diversity entry here: I found NC from The Blog That Dare Not Speak Its Name (that begins with a Z), which had a list of blogs they read as the great games of 2007 got underway. It also gave me Wolf Street, which in the fullness of time gave you Nick Corbishley, and occasionally Wolf himself. I’m grateful beyond words, dollars and sense.

    1. ilpalazzo

      Also came from the Z blog here. I tried to recall which year it was and remember it had to be before Obama took office which is pretty far in time. It became part of my daily routine right from the start AFAIR. Cheers!

    2. fresno dan

      I can’t remember if I found NC due to the “z” or if it was Calculated Risk, it has been so long. Maybe if was just a google search (back when google searches were good).

    3. Arizona Slim

      Me? I’m pretty sure I found this joint via a blog that started out just great, and then it degenerated into a food fight. (The Housing Bubble Blog, I am looking right at you!)

      Any-hoo, I’ve been kicking it here for, oh, about 10 years. The most recent favor that NC did for me was to keep me away from the clutches of Medicare Advantage. If I could give this blog a great big kiss, I would!

  24. BillS

    Wow! 16 years! Congratulations to Yves, Lambert and everyone who contributes to this important endeavor. I came to NC relatively late during the “PropOrNot” furfy (2016, if memory serves me). I read in an article in a well-known MSM rag that an economics blog called Naked Capitalism was labeled a Russian dupe/propaganda site and I had to have a look for myself. Now, nary a day goes by that I don’t visit the excellent links and read at least one of the outstanding long-form essays presented daily on this site. Thanks everyone. You have helped keep me sane in the absurdity of these tragi-comic times and have enlightened me on economic and political questions that I had never entertained before and have introduced me to other blogs/independent news/Samizdat sites that I would never have explored without links from NC.

  25. John Steinbach

    I found my way here from the Oil Drum when it folded. As The Automatic Earth & CounterPunch spiraled, Naked Capitalism became my “home.” Read it every day & comment occasionally- give what I can.

    NC is a treasure & the moderators deserve our profuse thanks!

  26. Lee


    I came to NC during the GFC by way of Daily Kos, from which I have been subsequently banned, when I encountered there postings quoting and referencing Naked Capitalism. I started doing the same thing, posting stuff there that I picked up here, often irritating the PMC, centrist, true blue Dems who dominate that site. I got away with it for years until I didn’t.

  27. fresno dan

    I have learned more, and changed my mind about so many, many things, do to this site then any other sources or items I have read in my life. I am extremely grateful for all the insights about what is really going on.

    1. Carla

      I can’t say it any better than fresno dan did. Many, many thanks to Yves, Lambert and the team that keeps NC going.

  28. Eclair

    “Sixteen candles make a lovely light …..,” illuminating the murky recesses of finance, economics, politics.

    Thanks to the NC team, led by Yves, for their dedication and knowledge. Although some mornings, after reading through the long list of juicy, ‘must-read’ articles and links, I wish they had just thrown up their hands and yelled, “That’s it, I’m spending the day binging on gelato and watching Netflix!”

    I have been profiting from NC’s wisdom since, I think, about 2008 or 2009. Probably came here via Calculated Risk, which I read religiously during the dark days of the housing crash. I remember well discovering the existence of such entities as : MBS, SIV , CDS and TARP. And becoming conversant in tranches, underwater mortgages, sub-prime, forbearance and foreclosure.

  29. Laughingsong

    I think I got here from Calculated Risk as well…..might even have been a reference from the smart and very-much-missed Tanta (Doris Dungey). I am so glad that this site has stood the test of time!

    1. schmoe

      Me as well, IIIRC. I found this website shortly after its formation and it has been my go-to website ever since.

  30. Art_DogCT

    When I saw the title of this post, I came to it expecting a sociological essay positing a generalized mental age of mid-adolescence in our [species/polities/communities] as reflected in our [politics/economies/culture]. What a treat to find I was wrong!

    I don’t remember exactly when I followed a link to NC, nor from where. It was post GFC, Econned had been published, Lambert and his 2:00PM Water Cooler was here. It was early in the Obama period, either campaign or first year or so of his first term, iirc. Most fortuitous landing I’ve ever made on the internet.

    The first mention I read of what came to be known as SARS-CoV-2 was here. I credit NC’s coverage with still being here, three years in. Just one of many impactful topics that NC’s writers and its commentariat have provided much food for thought, with plenty of laughter and plenty of beauty along the way. Thank you, all.

  31. newcatty

    Happy Birthday and many happy returns! My husband sent me a link from NC many years ago. Don’t recall the topic, but was therefore hooked on a fascinating and informative source of knowledge. Have not commented for a time. Still appreciate you and commenters. Season’s Greetings.

  32. notabanker

    A big thank you to Bill and Tanta over at Calculated Risk. Would have never found this place if it hadn’t been for them. RIP Tanta, and thanks again.

  33. ChrisPacific


    It doesn’t feel like sixteen years. I was an occasional reader of Mike Shedlock’s site via the Motley Fool, and he used to link to you frequently. Mish had his flaws (he either became a hardcore austerity libertarian or was one all along) but he was early to recognize the impending train wreck that was Bear/Lehman/Citi/AIG etc. More to the point, he backed it up with hard evidence and data that was possible for even a layperson to understand. I began to realize that there was a major event brewing that wasn’t being covered by analysts or the media at all, and started looking for alternative sources that seemed to know about it. Naked Capitalism was consistently the clearest and most insightful of these, and eventually I started following regularly.

    I don’t think I have ever fully trusted traditional media since. The GFC was a massively significant event, and it was not difficult to see coming – there were all kinds of warning signs. The role of derivatives, CDOs, and the shadow banking system in magnifying the crisis was more obscure, but by no means invisible as I saw some discussions of that in advance as well. Yet it was presented to us as a complete surprise by virtually all media, to the great financial and personal cost of many. Why? I could think of only two reasons: incompetence (they didn’t know about it) or malice (they knew about it, but chose to keep silent).

    If there’s a fundamental principle of Naked Capitalism, I think it’s that authorities can’t be trusted to reliably tell you the truth. To get there, we need to be alert for agendas and power dynamics, separate out the facts, and be alert to when they are minimized, ignored, or swept under the rug. We also need to resist the temptation to assume everything is false and adopt an evidence-free contrarian position of our own, as the conspiracy theorists do.

  34. C.O.

    Congratulations on 16 years! Like many people here I found naked capitalism via another blog. In my case, although not an economics maven per se, having a couple of bankers in the family and my own unwanted experiences with student loans, my knowledge was better though spotty in areas related to what bank managers do and the way dishonest loan arrangements can seriously screw up a young person starting out. (I was very lucky compared to my colleagues, and am thankful every day.) Odd rumblings drew my attention to something not right as the GFC approached, and I began trying to get more information and figure out what was going on because never before had so many “sign up for this credit card now” offers showed up in my mail box, and another of my relatives who had been dabbling in mutual funds and proud of it for years suddenly began talking about how they were pulling out.

    The blog that directed me here was boing boing in one of its better periods, and then in one of those happy synergies I started reading when Michael Hudson and Mark Blythe both were writing pointed critiques of austerity. What a relief to read more in depth analyses than Linda McQuaig’s Shooting the Hippo, which is very good but perforce doesn’t get too deep and of course came out in 1996 and was focussed on Canadian political and economic pathologies.

  35. Elizabeth

    Happy Birthday, NC! I found NC through the late Firedog Lake. After reading all the links and postings, I was hooked. I’ve learned so much, and also come here knowing there won’t be BS and other propaganda.

    Thank you Yves, Lambert, Nick, Conor and KLG. The moderators do a great job and NC has the commentariat. You’ve changed my life. I wish you many, many more birthdays.

  36. Jabura Basaidai

    Thank you Yves – when the scales fell from my eyes about NPR and their lack of reporting or negative reporting about Bernie I needed an antidote and found your blog – heaven sent is all I can write about following it since Fall ’06 – the commentariat is awesome and a bit intimidating for me to contribute alongside – but always intellectually invigorating – may the new year be good to you and your Mom – peace to you and all who the share the wonderful experience of Naked Capitalism – jb

  37. Ana

    I found NC long ago and got my first education in the shadow world of economics and how it is the engine under the political world I already knew well.
    Thank you for that piece of the puzzle.

    Having found NC, I also got my first information and still do get my best information on Covid. It literally saved my life due to my assorted genetic co-morbidities. I’ve been taking that which cannot be named, assorted supplements, and wearing an N100 elastromeric mask for two years now and have not (yet) been infected.
    Thank you for my life.

    Ana in Sacramento

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