Steven Rattner
Private Equity Investor, Former Auto Czar
00:54

Go East, Young Man

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Far from being a ponzi scheme, China is the real thing, says financier Steven Rattner. In fact, if he were starting his career today, Rattner says he would seek his fortune in China.

Steven Rattner

Steven Rattner led the Obama Administration's efforts to restructure the auto industry in 2009 as Counselor to the Secretary of the Treasury, having taken a break from his private investment firm Quadrangle Group, LLC.  He has also served as Deputy Chief Executive Officer at Lazard, after having worked at Morgan Stanley and Lehman Brothers. Rattner was also employed by the New York Times for nearly nine years, principally as an economic correspondent prior to working in finance.  He is author of "Overhaul: An Insider's Account of the Obama Administration's Emergency Rescue of the Auto Industry."

Transcript

Question: What would you do if you were starting your career now?

Steven Rattner:  If I were starting my career again, I would go to China.  There was a famous newspaper man who, I think Horace Greeley, who once said, “Go West young man,” meaning go to the frontier because that where, in America, the great opportunity was.  And that’s how I feel about China.  I’ve only been there twice, I think, but I’ve certainly spent time trying to learn about it, meeting with people and it’s a very controversial subject because there are many people who think China is a big Ponzi Scheme or is on an unsustainable course, or this or that.  I think China is the real thing.  And I think it – I think it is the great future growth story of the world, for the foreseeable future of the countries anyway.  And if I was just starting out I my career, whether I be a journalist or a banker or a businessman, or even a government, I would be focused on China.


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