Planet Money
Planet Money
Mar 23, 2023
Inside a bank run
Play • 34 min
Sometimes you hear these stories about an airplane that suddenly nosedives. Everyone onboard thinks this is it, and then the plane levels out and everything is fine. For about 72 hours, people and companies that had deposited millions of dollars at the Silicon Valley Bank — many of whom were in the tech industry — thought they had lost absolutely everything to a bank collapse.

Two weeks later, the situation at Silicon Valley Bank has leveled off. The FDIC seized the bank and eventually made all of its depositors whole. But to understand what that financial panic felt like, we retrace the Silicon Valley Bank run and eventual collapse. We hear from four people who were part of the bank run — when they realized early rumblings, what it felt like in the full stampede, what hard decisions they faced, and what the aftermath felt like. And along the way, we uncover the lessons you can only learn when you think the entire world is ending.

This episode was reported by Kenny Malone, produced by Alyssa Jeong Perry with help from Dave Blanchard, engineered by Brian Jarboe, fact-checked by Sierra Juarez, and edited by Jess Jiang.

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