Billionaire investor George Soros said the current economic upheaval has its roots in the financial deregulation of the 1980s and signals the end of a free-market model that has since dominated capitalist countries.
Liberalization of the financial industry begun by the Reagan administration has led to a series of crises forcing government intervention, Soros told economists and bankers at a Feb. 20 private dinner at Columbia University in New York. The global recession, triggered by the collapse of the U.S. housing market, has “damaged the financial system itself,” he said.
Regulators are in part to blame because they “abrogated” their responsibilities, Soros, 78, said. The philosophy of “market fundamentalism” has come under question as financial markets have proved inefficient and affected by biases rather than driven by all the available information, he said.