Auburn University’s Barth among all-star panel of Milken Global Conference experts

AUBURN UNIVERSITY – James R. Barth, the Lowder Eminent Scholar in Finance in Auburn University’s College of Business and Senior Finance Fellow at the Milken Institute, will share his perspective on the U.S. banking crisis during the 16th Annual Milken Global Conference.

The five-day event begins Monday, April 29, in Beverly Hills, Calif., and features a variety of financial and political experts, including businessman Bill Gates, media magnate Rupert Murdoch, former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair. The conference will have an estimated 600 speakers and 3,000 attendees from 60 nations and every state in the U.S.

Barth’s discussion will focus on how risky lending practices and lack of regulation and supervision created an ideal climate for a worldwide banking crisis.

“If banks book bad loans, we’re going to have problems whether they are big or small,” said Barth, who will join a five-person, one-hour panel to discuss “Global Financial Regulation.”

“We’ll talk about ‘Too Big to Fail’ and other related issues,” Barth said. “To limit the size of or break up banks is to delude one’s self into believing that our banking problems are behind us. Small banks can make risky loans that can cause trouble too.”

Barth served as chief economist of the Office of Thrift Supervision in the 1980s.

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(Written by Troy Johnson.)

Contact: Troy Johnson, College of Business (334) 844-8859 (,
Joe McAdory, College of Business (334) 844-8849 (, or
Mike Clardy, Office of Communications and Marketing, (334) 844-9999 (