In an award-winning new book, two law professors offer a sharply reasoned and accessible account of the actions and financial failures that produced the greatest economic collapse since the Great Depression.

Professors Kathleen C. Engel of Suffolk University Law School and Patricia A. McCoy of the University of Connecticut, experts in the law and economics of financial regulation and consumer lending, tell the full story of the consumer abuses and regulatory inaction that led to the recent financial crisis in The Subprime Virus: Reckless Credit, Regulatory Failure, and Next Steps.

Explains how crisis evolved

The Subprime Virus delves into a crisis that shook the American economy to its core and explains how it happened.

Engel and McCoy offer an informed portrait of the political and financial failures that led to the crisis, revealing how consumer abuses in a once-obscure corner of the home mortgage market led to the near meltdown of the world’s financial system.

Regulators' role in crisis

They examine the roles of federal banking and securities regulators, who knew of lenders’ hazardous mortgages and of Wall Street’s addiction to high stakes financing, but did nothing until the crisis erupted.

The Subprime Virus has been recognized by the American College of Consumer Financial Services Lawyers, which will present the authors with its 2010 book award at the ABA Business Law Section spring meetings.

A "must-read"

“From the subprime neighborhoods to Wall Street and Washington, Engel and McCoy trace the fraud, incompetence, greed and negligence that wrecked the world economy, the American financial system, and the wealth of millions,” observes James K. Galbraith, noted economic policy expert and professor of government at the University of Texas. “This book should be on every prosecutor's must-read list.”

The Subprime Virus: Reckless Credit, Regulatory Failure, and Next Steps is published by Oxford University Press.

Kathleen Engel, the associate dean for Intellectual Life and professor of Law at Suffolk University Law School, is a national authority on mortgage finance and regulation, subprime and predatory lending, and housing discrimination. Engel's research on financial services markets and the laws that regulate them regularly catches the attention of the press, and she presents her research in academic, banking and policy forums throughout the country and around the world.