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The Real Crash

3.87  ·  Rating details ·  972 Ratings  ·  100 Reviews
You might be thinking everything’s okay: the stock market is on the rise, jobs are growing, the worst of it is over.
You’d be wrong.
In The Real Crash, New York Times bestselling author Peter D. Schiff argues that America is enjoying a government-inflated bubble, one that reality will explode . . . with disastrous consequences for the economy and for each of us. Schiff dem
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published May 22nd 2012 by St. Martin's Press (first published May 8th 2012)
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Dan Raymo
Oct 09, 2012 rated it it was ok
Having recently read Paul Krugman's, End This Depression Now!, and finding myself in more or less agreement with most of it, I was looking for the conservatives' take on our economic problems. After a month-long battle with Ayn Rand's, Atlas Shrugged, I eventually came across The Real Crash: America's Coming Bankruptcy---How to Save Yourself and Your Country by Peter Schiff.

Most of my friends consider me to be a "pinko leftist", and they're probably right (or maybe I just run with the wrong cro
Peter Schiff accurately predicted the 2008 meltdown of the mortgage market and financial sector. Before it all hit the fan, though, he was called a doomsayer and was frequently laughed at on the mainstream financial talk shows. But he turned out to be right. The real problem, Schiff argues in this book, is that what happened in 2008 was not actually "The Crash," but was simply the prelude to it. The dot-com bubble popped at the turn of the century; the housing bubble popped in 2008; Schiff shows ...more
Notes of 29th October 2013.

Now that it is a hot topic in the USA the question of the “debt ceiling” and the “default” risk (let’s see coming February), this book is quite appropriate. Some weeks over the Government Shutdown (a short-term victory for Obama) many wonder what’s next. A divided (and apparently unpopular) GOP tries to assert itself midst the moderates and Tea partiers.

Anyway, perplexity and doubts can surely be seen on the USA future. I’ve watched an interview investor Schiff gave
Jan 07, 2013 rated it really liked it

So basically this is what I got out of this: Invest in...
+ Raw materials
+ Agriculture
+ Dividend-paying stocks in companies that sell to growing markets abroad (not necessarily American companies who do so as they may incur burdensome taxes for their efforts)
+ Currencies of: Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Switzerland, Norway, the Netherlands, Canada, China.
+ Short-term, nondollar bonds
+ Gold


Whenever people credit me with calling the crash, it pains me to tell them that what
Jan 04, 2015 rated it it was ok
I normally pass on books like this, books that promise the next best and greatest investments, predict impending economic doom or guarantee how to get filthy rich in 30 days or less! Invariably these books tend to be narrowly focused, involve some sort of extreme political, social or economic position, grind lots of axes and conclude with an often times not so subtle sales pitch. However I went against my best judgment when a good friend at work insisted I give it a read and let me borrow his co ...more
Aaron Thibeault
May 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*A full executive summary of this book is available here:

Since the housing and financial crash of 2008 America's recovery has been tepid at best. Unemployment has remained high; manufacturing has not returned; personal savings are as low as they've ever been, and personal debt as high; housing is still a mess, and banking not much better; and, on top of it all, government debt is awe-inspiring and seems completely insoluble. According to financial investo
Jun 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
For those who aren't familiar with Schiff's understanding of the economy I refer you to 2 things: 1) Schiff's book Crashproof (written in 2006) or Crashproof 2.0 (a copy of Crashproof but with commentaries after each chapter about how things played out in 2008). He wasn't just a "doomer" in predicting the 2008 financial crash; he explained why.
Secondly, he was recognized for his analysis by an economist, Bezemer, who wrote a paper "No One Saw This Coming." About a dozen other people were also r
Julie Marsh
Jul 18, 2012 rated it liked it
How interesting that I finished this book as the LIBOR mess is unfolding.

This book includes a lot of stuff I agree with, and a lot of stuff that's specious. Schiff absolves actions of corporations and banks with the excuse that they're merely following the government's lead. Business is equally corrupt as government; at least government acts under the auspices of improving everyone's situation, not just executives and the largest stockholders. The free market is not the cure-all Schiff (and Ron
Serge Boucher
Jul 02, 2012 rated it it was ok
Despite the low rating, I actually really enjoyed reading this book. It's a super-interesting read, if you actually know a few things about economics and enjoy fishing logical mistakes and questionable (often hidden) assumptions in a superficially convincing argument. While Peter Schiff is right about some things (his libertarianism on social issues is well-placed and his arguments are sound) and more intellectually consistent than most pundits (admittedly a low bar), his economic model remains ...more
May 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I am yet to find an opponent of Peter's ideas who can offer one half as strong of an argument as he makes
Apr 01, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: interest
Schiff argues that America is enjoying a government-inflated bubble, one that will eventually burst with disastrous consequences for the economy.

In his view, the disease in the economy is debt-financed consumption, and the cure will require a recession. The medicine – Americans consuming less and saving more while companies invest for the long term and the government tightens its belt – was deemed too bitter a pill to swallow by the Bush and Obama administrations. Instead, they fed the economy b
Feb 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Peter Schiff gets it.

I could have written this book. Probably not as well, but in an ideological sense, I have never heard someone espouse economic and political beliefs that mirrored my own so much.

Most of the policy changes he recommends will ever see the light of day, simply because the US of today is comprised of a government that is too big and covetous of it's own power, combined with a gutless and sheepish population that have grown up with the notion that government will always be there
Kevin Halter
Nov 20, 2013 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this book, I really did, but there were times that I wanted to throw it down and just walk away.
Peter Schiff was okay when the subject was economics, debt, national deficit, etc. but when he started talking about the environment, education, legalizing drugs and prostitution I became frustrated (mainly by the books inability to respond to my mental arguments) by the deficiency in the exploration of the socio and moral repercussions for some of the changes he was arguing for,
Eric Molicki
May 23, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: politics
While Schiff is very good at identifying what's going on and what is likely to come economically, "the market" is not the answer to everything. Some solutions I liked. Others were proposed with federalism trumping morality.
Ghassan Linjawi
In chapter 5 he sound like recommending his own buesniss as an advisor.
Nevertheless, He was right all along
May 04, 2016 added it
He has a lot of interesting points. And maybe he is a bit of an alarmist. I need to study the subject more before coming to any conclusions.
Michael Scott
May 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every American needs to read this book. Few will though as it is chalk full of predictions about our economy that few will want to hear.
Chris Gard
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
I'll admit, there were a few hiccups here and there with some questionable ideological shortcuts to make his arguments more salient to the reader. Nevertheless, Schiff is great at making arguments that are clear to understand. You don't need to do cognitive somersaults to conjure the imagery of cause-and-effect in the discussion of tax rates, inflation, saving disincentives and the impact of excessive stimulus spending when he unpacks them, unlike a lot of others who attempt to simplify these co ...more
Oct 16, 2012 rated it it was ok
I would counsel anyone looking for a balanced, objective examination of the economic issues facing the country to look elsewhere. Schiff wears his ideological bias on his sleeve, and unfortunately a lot of what he says must be taken with a grain of salt.

While my myriad objections to the book I detailed below, my chief complaint is this: the book presents an inflammatory portrait of the American economy (not erroneous, see below) and is dotted with investment "tips" that may sound impressive to a
May 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
greedy vultures...he is telling us and warning us something in life must be conducted in basic way: savings is actually a good thing, no free lunch..and debt especially personal debt is a very bad thing..government is leading a pack of greedy evils to sell you to loan you something you don't need: car loan, student loan, QE, and what USA is facing is enormous debt and personal debts in which is only heading to one direction: spiral downwards..but someone has to poke the balloon for all the fake ...more
Rachel Sutton
I had to quit half way through. Some very good points but awash with agressive, opinionated positions poorly thought out. Would have been much better if the author presented the facts as he saw them and left all the snide remarks aside.
Lauri Svan
Aug 15, 2017 rated it liked it
While his point is clear - the problems about capital should be left to the markets, a full book worth repeating this through various samples makes it a bit boring read.
Evan McB
Jan 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: hot chicks
Recommended to Evan by: loud man on the radio
Shelves: business
One of the clarifying metaphors Schiff uses in this book to explain current economic woes is about a patient who presents to a doctor with symptoms of illness in his hands, feet, face, eyes, dick, brain, etc. etc. (I forget all of the body parts that were featured) The doctor, seeking to find a root cause for the various maladies, checks the patient's blood, which courses through the whole body, so chances are that something wrong with the blood would be causing problems in all the patient's var ...more
Logan Wells
Mar 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's terrifying what his predictions are, but he makes a good case on why the crash of 2008/2009 will look small after the next economic crash.
Jul 17, 2012 rated it it was ok
This book is supposed to be about the "real crash" that is coming, following the 2008 recession. He spends exactly 52 pages on this. The other 300 pages is basically one long political rant.

The government and the people are both wracked with unprecedented levels of debt, that will soon because unmanageable. The government can't even afford to pay the interest on this debt; it merely borrows more to pay the interest. When the time comes to pay the piper, the government will be unwilling to make t
Alberto Lopez
Feb 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
A great book. The author makes a great argument about the state of the economy. The only caveat is that Mr. Schiff's general views may be a bit too extreme for some. Nonetheless, all his ideas are interesting for the open mind.
Paul DeBusschere
Dec 22, 2012 rated it it was ok
I bought this book because I found Mr. Schiff's boldness in proposing the elimination of entitlements in the USA to be refreshing and intriguing. His proposals to eliminate income taxes and entitlements were enough to compel me to buy the book. And on those issues, Mr. Schiff makes sound arguments.

However, Mr. Schiff then proceeds to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Unfortunately, he takes the all-too simplistic libertarian stance of "if less government is good, then no government must be
Aug 29, 2012 rated it it was ok
In this book, Peter Schiff explains what he he believes are the causes of America's financial crisis and the drastic measures he believes we should take to solve them. I agree with him on several points he makes. I agree with him that:

Social Security is a legalized pyramid scheme.

Going off the gold standard and allowing the Federal Reserve to create fiat money devalues the whole money supply.

Excessive government regulation hinders job creation, business growth and energy independence.

Our foreign
Meinna Gwet
Jan 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Very interesting book. In the process of criticizing the American economic system, Peter Schiff brings his audience into the fascinating world of macroeconomics, policymaking, the history of money and the rise and upcoming fall of what used to be the most developed country in the world. I personally learned a lot and I took a real pleasure in reading this book. Plus, Peter Shiff writes in simple terms, which makes the book accessible to most people (I think!).

However, Peter Schiff has his own i
Pat Murphy
Dec 16, 2015 rated it liked it
This book is as much a political opinion as it is about economics. Most of the economics are predictions of what would happen if,,and criticism of current government and it's policies. The thinking is sound as far as I can tell when he talks about money and the Federal Reserve just taking money out of thin air being a recipe for inflation. But he thinks government should stay out of business altogether and let the "market" take care of the direction for the economy and value of money. I have bee ...more
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Peter David Schiff is an American investment broker, author, financial commentator, and was a candidate in the 2010 Republican primary for the United States Senate seat from Connecticut.

Schiff is CEO and chief global strategist of Euro Pacific Capital Inc., a broker-dealer based in Westport, Connecticut and CEO of Euro Pacific Precious Metals, LLC, a gold and silver dealer based in New York City.
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“Let me illustrate what I mean by “the opportunity costs of working.” I was recently in the market for domestic help, and a young woman I wanted to hire as a housekeeper refused the job because I wouldn’t pay her under the table. No, she wasn’t an illegal alien—she just wanted me to treat her as one. The reason she made this unusual demand was that if she had income to report, she would suddenly have to start making student loan payments and paying taxes. To work for me would have cost her hundreds of dollars every month, creating a big enough hit to her bottom line that it wasn’t worth working anymore. (Perhaps she wasn’t savvy enough to apply for all of the available government programs, but she could have just as well pointed out that my hiring her would have cost her thousands annually in food stamps and other welfare payments.) Just imagine—there are so many unemployed people today, and yet government is making it too expensive for anyone to come and clean your floors for a fair wage. (By the way, the job I offered paid close to $40,000 per year.) Here was someone who admitted that reality quite bluntly—and I still regret the fact that I couldn’t hire her legally.” 1 likes
“For those still looking for a real-world example of how a minimum wage destroys jobs, there is no better example than American Samoa. In 2007 the U.S. Congress applied the federal minimum wage to Samoa, a U.S. territory. The increases walloped the Samoan economy, with the unemployed rate soaring to 30 percent and inflation hitting double digits. Its largest employer, Chicken of the Sea, shut down its Samoan canning operation completely in 2009, laying off 2,041 employees. The island’s second largest employer, StarKist, laid off 400 workers the following year with plans to lay off 400 more.” 0 likes
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