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American BondsHow Credit Markets Shaped a Nation$
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Sarah L. Quinn

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691156750

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691156750.001.0001

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What We Owe One Another

What We Owe One Another

Chapter:
(p.199) 10 What We Owe One Another
Source:
American Bonds
Author(s):

Sarah L. Quinn

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691156750.003.0010

This concluding chapter summarizes the main points of the book, points out areas for future research, and draws connections with later developments in securitization and credit programs leading up to the crash of 2007–2008. It also argues that understandings of the limits and possibilities of what people owe to each other and can expect from the state are written into the designs of financial instruments. These understandings help determine the distribution of profits and risks within specific financial transactions. This matters because the distributional politics of credit plays out simultaneously on the level of how credit fits within a political economy and on the level of specific exchanges and loans. The issue, in other words, is not just whether the people of a nation generally use credit to pay for housing or college, but the terms built into those loans. What people do in financial markets, what those financial markets are expected to do—together these dynamics make up the social life of credit in a nation.

Keywords:   securitization, credit programs, financial instruments, distributional politics, credit, political economy, loans, financial markets

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