Andrew Jackson, whom Van Buren had served as secretary of state, vice president, and close adviser, hurt the federal Second Bank of the United States by moving federal funds to smaller state banks. Jackson thought the Bank of the United States hurt ordinary citizens by exercising too much control over credit and economic opportunity, and he succeeded in shutting it down.
But the state banks' reckless credit policies led to massive speculation in Western lands. By 1837, after Van Buren had become president, banks were clearly in trouble. Some began to close, businesses began to fail, and thousands of people lost their land. This was the Panic of 1837. What do you think President Van Buren should have done about it?