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About The Author Martin Lowy

Marty’s books include Debt Spiral, (about the causes of the Great Recession and Great Financial Crisis), Instability (that describes how financial systems are naturally unstable), High Rollers (a history of the savings and loan debacle), and The Education Solution (why we need better early education in order to enable less affluent children to enter kindergarten equally prepared as more affluent children). The Education Solution also has a website:

Marty studied African politics back in 1962, when few Americans were interested in Africa. The Ford Foundation made that possible. His interest in Africa came to the fore again in the 1990s, when, as part of his international bank regulatory practice, he represented the most pan-African bank, called Meridien.


Marty went to Amherst College and Yale Law School. At Amherst he played varsity tennis and squash and was president of his fraternity. At Yale, he was Managing Editor of the Law Journal and a member of the Order of the Coif.

In 1964 Martin Luther King, Jr. received an honorary degree from Yale. Marty was the lucky person assigned to greet him and take him around the campus. (“Call me Martin,” he said, after I had introduced myself.) “It was a great moment in my life,” Marty says, “spending an hour alone with one of the greatest Americans. He was quietly forceful. I guess that is what they call charisma. He did not say any one thing that I found memorable. But his quiet majesty has been with me ever since.” 


When Yale went to write the history of that day in 2014, there was a missing hour. It was MARTY’S hour. No, there’s no picture of them together—no cell phones back then. Marty delivered him to the robing room, where this one was taken:

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“The hopes for racial equality in the U.S. that Dr. King and I shared over 50 years ago,” Marty says, “have not been realized. It remains a top national agenda item, though the way forward is less clear than it seemed to back then.”


Marty practiced law at large law firms for 20 years, focusing primarily of financial regulation and corporate law, but doing some work on antitrust and tax. Then he was vice chairman of a medium-sized bank for three years, before beginning his writing and entrepreneurial career. High Rollers was his first book in 1991, followed by Practical Handbook for Bank Directors in 1995. He founded Sports Simulation inc., a high-tech company that made simulators for baseball, football, soccer, hockey and basketball in 1993. Eventually, after overcoming many technological hurdles, he had to close the company because it did not become consistently profitable. It was a difficult and rewarding experience in many ways—but not financially.


For the last two decades, Marty has focused on his research and writing, publishing five more books and over 200 articles, as well as playing golf and cooking with his wife Louise almost every night. The French say “un repas sans vin est comme un jour sans soleil”—a meal without wine is like a day without sun. Marty feels the same way about an evening when he and Louise don’t get to cook.

Son Chris, a software executive, has two children, Sebastien and Antoinette, and Peter, a tax lawyer, has a daughter, Katerina. All are teenagers and all play tennis.

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Other Books By Martin Lowy

  • High Rollers: Inside the S&L Debacle (Praeger 1991) (New York Times Notable Book of 1991, cited by U.S. Supreme Court)

  • Practical Handbook for Bank Directors (Financial Institutions Press 1995)

  • Corporate Governance for Public Company Directors (Aspen-Wolters 2003)

  • Debt Spiral: How Credit Failed Capitalism (Public Policy Press 2009)

  • The Education Solution: Restoring Prosperity; Reducing Inequality (Public Policy Press 2015)

  • Instability: The Fragility of Banks and What to Do About It (Public Policy Press 2017)

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