We at Planet Money have been trying to find ways to explain what banks do.
And I realized one reason it's hard is that the only time most people get to play bank is in the game Monopoly. And that is just such a lousy lousy example.
The bank in monopoly is basically a cash register. It doesn't take in deposits, it has no regulator.
It does make loans though. If you "mortgage" Marvin Gardens (some form of home equity loan I guess) the bank will give you $140.
I have seen housing bubbles in Monopoly. My sister and I used to get in bidding wars over Mediterranean and Baltic Avenue. But maybe they were underpriced. I mean, $50 for a property?
Anyone know a game with a more realistic bank?