SAN DIEGO, May 12, 2009 — Today University of San Diego School of Law Professor Frank Partnoy was interviewed by Jon Stewart on Comedy Central's The Daily Show. Professor Partnoy discussed his latest book, The Match King: Ivar Kreuger, The Financial Genius Behind a Century of Wall Street Scandals.
At the height of the roaring ’20s, Swedish émigré Ivar Kreuger made a fortune raising money in America and loaning it to Europe in exchange for matchstick monopolies. His enterprise was a rare success story throughout the Great Depression. Yet after Kreuger’s suicide in 1932, the true nature of his empire emerged. Driven by success to adopt ever-more perilous practices, Kreuger had turned to shell companies in tax havens, fudged accounting figures, off-balance-sheet accounting, even forgery. He created a raft of innovative financial products — many of them precursors to instruments wreaking havoc in today’s markets. When his Wall Street empire collapsed, millions went bankrupt.
Watch The Daily Show interview in its entirety.
Professor Partnoy is the director of USD School of Law's new Center for Corporate and Securities Law. He teaches and writes in the areas of corporate law, corporate finance and financial market regulation. His other publications include his book on Enron, Infectious Greed: How Deceit and Risk Corrupted the Financial Markets (Henry Holt), and FIASCO: Blood In The Water On Wall Street (W.W. Norton) as well as more than 20 articles on various topics related to financial market regulation. Before joining the USD faculty in 1997, Partnoy worked as an investment banker at CS First Boston and Morgan Stanley in New York, and as an attorney at Covington and Burling in Washington, D.C. He was co-recipient of the 1999 Thorsnes Prize for Excellence in Teaching and was the 2004 Herzog Endowed Scholar.
Securities Expert and USD Law Professor Frank Partnoy