F.I.A.S.C.O.: Blood in the Water on Wall Street

F.I.A.S.C.O.: Blood in the Water on Wall Street

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by Frank Partnoy
     
 

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“Applies an intelligent, clinical eye to [an] excruciatingly complex corner of the financial world.” —New York Times
A classic of its kind, Frank Partnoy’s best-selling FIASCO takes readers inside the rollicking world of derivatives on Wall Street during the mid-1990s. The book tracks Partnoy’s success as a young Morgan Stanley

Overview

“Applies an intelligent, clinical eye to [an] excruciatingly complex corner of the financial world.” —New York Times
A classic of its kind, Frank Partnoy’s best-selling FIASCO takes readers inside the rollicking world of derivatives on Wall Street during the mid-1990s. The book tracks Partnoy’s success as a young Morgan Stanley employee who quickly becomes steeped in a culture that treats client as targets to be “blown up” or have their faces “ripped off.” A decade later FIASCO remains one of the most damning and prescient pictures of the speculative frenzies that grip Wall Street and the victims they can leave in their wake. In Partnoy’s case they include well-publicized losses at Orange County, Barings, and Procter & Gamble, among others. A new epilogue written for this edition brings Partnoy’s story—as well as the story of derivatives—up to the present.

Editorial Reviews

Worth
“It’s hard to imagine a better explanation of how clients can be misled into believing that these sophisticated hedging instruments are safe investments.”
Library Journal
Before his recent return to practicing law, Partnoy was a derivatives salesman for the prestigious Wall Street investment bank Morgan Stanley. In simple terms, a derivative is a tricky financial instrument whose value depends on another security, such as a stock or bond. Partnoy takes us inside the complex world of high finance, deriving his title from Morgan Stanley's competitive skeet-shooting event, the Fixed Asset Annual Sporting Clays, which "set the mood for the firm's barbarous approach to its clients' increasing derivatives losses." This is a story about deceit and manipulation by fund managers wanting big bonus checks and a wake-up call to the average investor. Partnoy explains in easy language the investment alternatives used by the very wealthy to avoid paying capital gains taxes. In addition, we get an in-depth look at well-known derivative "fiascoes," namely Orange County, Procter & Gamble, and others. This fascinating book will appeal to serious investors. Recommended for all business collections.Bellinda Wise, Nassau Community Coll. Lib., Garden City, N.Y.
Michael Lewis
“F.I.A.S.C.O. is a ringside seat on the nastiest and most important game being played on Wall Street today. Think of derivatives trading as a blood sport, with the unsuspecting consumer as the prey. Read this book, or else. . . . —Michael Lewis, author of Liar’s Poker”
Peter Truell - The New York Times
“A lively account of life in the mid-1990s by one of Wall Street’s own, Frank Partnoy. . . . Mr. Partnoy’s book has a serious mission. It seeks to show that derivatives . . . are but the latest method that Wall Street is using to skin Main Street. . . . Mr. Partnoy’s detailed allegations of specific trades and the cynical way that Wall Street treats its customers is likely to attract attention.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393336818
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
04/06/2009
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
271
Product dimensions:
5.60(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.70(d)

Meet the Author

Frank Partnoy is the author of Infectious Greed and The Match King. He has written for the Financial Times, the New York Times, and Portfolio. He teaches law at the University of San Diego, where he lives.

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F.I.A.S.C.O.: Blood in the Water on Wall Street 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
little_m More than 1 year ago
The collective GDP of the entire world is something like 65-70 trillion dollars, but the amount of money involved in derivatives trades is something like 400-600 trillion dollars. Yet we read in the papers that insiders of the banking industry are resistant to regulation of derivatives. Derivatives are difficult for the layman to understand, but this insider's book on the derivatives industry gives us a basic understanding of how easily derivatives can be misused and abused, and how in this Great Recession so many of us are paying the price for that abuse. Investment bankers may not want you to read this book, but I do.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago