As Nelley points out, he was also reckless and irresponsible with his duty to his investors.That's absolutely not true for investors who bought & held many popular bank stocks (C, BAC, CFC, FNM, FRE, LEH, MER, WM just to name a few). These stocks never recovered.On the other hand, every person who invested in the market from 2007 or earlier have all made money if they bought and held, if they could have withstood the drops.
Broad index investors fared well, though.
Many investors in individual stocks got wiped out, especially if they had the mentality that you should buy & hold no matter how rough the market gets or how low a stock goes. This is a very dangerous mindset.
It applies to Canadians too, and most people don't realize how close they came to losing their shirts. For example both CIBC and BMO's equity was entirely wiped out during the crisis and on fundamentals, the banks were worthless. Only incredible amounts of American & Canadian government support kept the companies from failing.
Unfortunately most people walked away with the lesson "Canadian bank stocks always recover", which isn't the right lesson at all. The correct lesson is more like, "worthless stocks you hold may recover when there's enormous government intervention".