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CNBC ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY "HOUSE OF CARDS" UNCOVERS THE REASONS BEHIND THE GREATEST FINANCIAL COLLAPSE SINCE THE GREAT DEPRESSION

Jennifer Dauble
Monday, 2 Feb 2009 | 7:04 PM ET

CNBC ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY "HOUSE OF CARDS" UNCOVERS THE REASONS BEHIND THE GREATEST FINANCIAL COLLAPSE SINCE THE GREAT DEPRESSION

HOW DID IT HAPPEN AND WHY DID THIS HOUSE OF CARDS COME TUMBLING DOWN?

Two-hour Documentary Reported by CNBC's David Faber Premieres on CNBC on Thursday, February 12th at 8PM & 12AM ET

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., January 27, 2009 –

It's the defining story of our time....how the American dream became a nightmare.

On Thursday, February 12th at 8PM & 12AM ET, CNBC presents "House of Cards," an original CNBC documentary reported by award-winning correspondent David Faber. In this two-hour special, CNBC investigates the origins of the global economic collapse. Faber gathers the personal stories of key participants: home buyers, mortgage brokers, investment bankers and investors – all of whom let greed blind them to marketplace realities. It is their words and experiences – not those of pundits or commentators –

that bring to life the painful story of the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression.

CNBC's Faber reveals how a financial house of cards was slowly built following the 9/11 attacks. As the U.S. government tried to revive the economy by repeatedly dropping interest rates, families lunged at the opportunity to refinance their mortgages. Faber introduces viewers to mortgage lenders like Daniel Sadek who drastically reduced borrowers' credit requirements and raked in personal profits of $5 million a month.

Wall Street began to consume risky mortgages and turn them into products they could sell to hungry foreign investors. Banker Michael Francis tells Faber that no matter how risky the package, during the peak of the lending frenzy any mortgage-backed security could find a home on Wall Street.

Exploring just how far the effect of the credit crisis extended, Faber travels to Narvik, Norway, a town far above the Arctic Circle that was convinced it could solve its budget problems by investing in Wall Street's wares. Mayor Karen Kuvaas and Narvik's other town leaders hoped to become "great heroes" by reaping the income from financial ventures they believed were safe.

Faber speaks with Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan who defends decisions he made that critics say laid the groundwork for the crisis. Greenspan also admits that even he did not understand the details of the more complex securities on the market.

Also, in a rare interview, Faber speaks with one of the few savvy investors who bet against the mortgage-backed security fever –

Dallas' Kyle Bass whose hedge fund soared 600% in just eighteen months.

CNBC's "House of Cards" will re-air on Sunday, February 15th at 9PM ET and Monday, February 16th (President's Day) at 8AM, 8PM and 12AM ET.

An Emmy, Peabody, and Dupont award winner, David Faber is the anchor and co-producer of CNBC's acclaimed original documentaries as well as a contributor to CNBC's "Squawk on the Street."

James Jacoby is writer and producer of CNBC's "House of Cards." Jill Landes is co-producer. James Segelstein is senior producer. Mitch Weitzner is the Executive Producer of CNBC's Long Form Unit. Jonathan Wald is the Senior Vice President, Business News at CNBC.

For more information including web extras and extended video clips, log onto originals.cnbc.com.



About CNBC:
CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news, providing real-time financial market coverage and business information to more than 340 million homes worldwide, including more than 95 million households in the United States and Canada. The network's Business Day programming (weekdays from 5:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m. ET) is produced at CNBC's headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and also includes reports from CNBC news bureaus worldwide. Additionally, CNBC viewers can manage their individual investment portfolios and gain additional in-depth information from on-air reports by accessing http://www.cnbc.com.

Members of the media can receive more information about CNBC and its programming on the NBC Universal Media Village Web site at http://nbcumv.com/cnbc/.