Diary of a Very Bad Year: Confessions of an Anonymous Hedge Fund Manager [NOOK Book]

Overview

The First Book from n+1—an Essential Chronicle of Our Financial Crisis

HFM: Where are you going to buy protection on the U.S. government's credit? I mean, if the U.S. defaults, what bank is going to be able to make good on that contract? Who are you going to buy that contract from, the Martians?

n+1: When does this begin to feel like less of a cyclical thing, like the weather, and more of a permanent, ...

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Diary of a Very Bad Year: Confessions of an Anonymous Hedge Fund Manager

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Overview

The First Book from n+1—an Essential Chronicle of Our Financial Crisis

HFM: Where are you going to buy protection on the U.S. government's credit? I mean, if the U.S. defaults, what bank is going to be able to make good on that contract? Who are you going to buy that contract from, the Martians?

n+1: When does this begin to feel like less of a cyclical thing, like the weather, and more of a permanent, end-of-the-world kind of thing?

HFM: When you see me selling apples out on the street, that's when you should go stock up on guns and ammunition.

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Editorial Reviews

Dwight Garner
…thoughtful, funny and unpretentious…the view from a man clinging to a palm tree in a hurricane…These interviews…began in 2007, when the subprime mortgage disaster become impossible to ignore, and continued through last year. They're an urbane if frazzled chronicle of shock and despair.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
Expanding on a 2007 interview in the literary magazine n+1, editor and interviewer Gessen draws together two years' worth of interviews with a despairing anonymous hedge fund manager. HFM, as Gessen calls him, didn't go to business school or major in economics, but has been working successfully in hedge funds for over a decade. With some context provided by Gessen, HFM schools readers in the stories behind the death of Bear Stearns, the collapse of Lehman Brothers, the plunging dollar, the bailouts, the Madoff scandal, and, finally, the upswing. Though it's interesting to have a personal take on the tumultuous past two years—and HFM ends the interviews when the stress finally drives him to take a semisabbatical—the decision to tell this story in an interview format is tricky and ultimately unsuccessful; the choppy transcription format distances readers from the ideas at hand, and the points lose their punch. Fans of the original article will find this expansion compelling, but other readers curious about the factors behind the crash will do better elsewhere. (July)
Booklist
“A great read. . . . HFM offers a brilliant financial professional’s view of the economic situation in real time, from September 2007, when problems in financial markets began to surface, until late summer 2009.”
Financial Times
“Eminently readable. . . . Always engaging. . . . Although it is not fiction, Diary of a Very Bad Year is, in its own way, an attempt to bridge the gulf between the literary and financial worlds.”
BusinessWeek
Diary of a Very Bad Year does something few of the books written about the crisis have accomplished: It delivers an insider perspective on the events in real time, rather than dwelling on conclusions reached after the fact.”
Time Out New York
“HFM does a good job of teaching the reader how mortgage-backed paper, money-market funds, and credit-default swaps work, while offering up juicier tidbits about the ethics and legalities of his sector.”
Time magazine
“A short, illuminating set of interviews with one savvy, articulate Wall Streeter. . . . A penetrating, educational and at times harrowing play-by-play.”
The Millions
n+1 (in the person of Keith Gessen) lends an outsider’s ear to the brilliant disquisitions of a guy caught in the middle of it all. . . . Excellent reading. . . . Compelling.”
The Wall Street Journal
“A highly readable refresher on the financial crisis. . . . Amazingly—and largely because of the anonymity he’s granted—the nameless hedgie gives straight answers. . . . While HFM comes off as a bro you don’t want to mess with, the book is packed with plenty of humor.”
Newsweek
Diary of a Very Bad Year takes the first steps toward putting a human face on the funds.”
Ezra Klein
“My favorite book written about the financial crisis. . . . Highly recommended.”
James Surowiecki
Diary of a Very Bad Year is a rarity: a book on modern finance that’s both extraordinarily thoughtful and enormously entertaining.”
David Backus
“A wonderful book. Diary of a Very Bad Year is a fascinating commentary on the crisis and a great read.”
Dwight Garner
“Thoughtful, funny and unpretentious. . . . An unexpected treat that belongs on the shelf once labeled belles-lettres. . . . It is plenty enjoyable to watch HFM’s mind unfurl.”
Time Magazine
"A short, illuminating set of interviews with one savvy, articulate Wall Streeter. . . . A penetrating, educational and at times harrowing play-by-play."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061992407
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 6/22/2010
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 1,335,155
  • File size: 433 KB

Meet the Author

n+1 is a twice-yearly print journal of politics, literature, and culture. Founded in 2004, it has been praised by the New York Times, TLS, Boston Globe, and Le Revue Des Deux Mondes, and reviled by the New Criterion and Gawker. In 2006 it won the Utne Independent Press Award for Best Writing. An anthology of its most significant essays was published in 2008 by Suhrkamp, in German.

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Customer Reviews

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