Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

4.4 55
by Michael Lewis
     
 

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Michael Lewis returns to the financial world with a new book that gives readers a ringside seat as the biggest story in years prepares to hit Wall Street.  See more details below

Overview

Michael Lewis returns to the financial world with a new book that gives readers a ringside seat as the biggest story in years prepares to hit Wall Street.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Janet Maslin
…dazzling…Because Mr. Lewis is at the helm finding clear, simple metaphors for even the most impenetrable financial minutiae, this tawdry tale should make sense to anyone. And so should its shock value. Flash Boys is guaranteed to make blood boil.
Publishers Weekly
★ 04/14/2014
In his latest captivating expedition into the marketplace jungle, Lewis (Moneyball) explores how the rise of computerized stock exchanges and their attendant scams started a battle for the soul of Wall Street. He probes the subterfuges of high frequency traders who, assisted by banks and brokerages happy to sell out customers, use blindingly fast data links to gain inside information on investors' trades and then exploit them on today's entirely digital stock markets. At the center of his novelistic narrative is a New York mosaic: Brad Katsuyama, a Canadian-born trader with a conscience; Ronan, a hot-headed Irish telecom expert; and a Dostoevskian cast of Slavic programmers veering between existential angst and saintly resignation. This cast bands together to expose the market manipulations and then start their own honest stock exchange. Lewis does his usual superb job of explicating the inexplicable in his lucid, absorbing account of the crossroads of high-tech data transfer and byzantine market strategies, where milliseconds of signaling speed yield billions in profits. He also presents a rich sociology of Wall Street's assholes-vs.-geeks culture clash between greedy, blustering financial honchos and the flickers of rationalism and humanity in the tech people they need to run their markets. The result is an engrossing true-life morality play that unmasks the devil in the details of high finance. Agent: Al Zuckerman, Writer's House. (Apr.)
Janet Maslin - The New York Times
“Dazzling… guaranteed to make blood boil… riveting.”
The Wall Street Journal
“Important to public debate about Wall Street… in exposing what one of his central characters calls the ‘Pandora’s box of ridiculousness’ that financial exchanges have become.”
Philip Delves Broughton - The Wall Street Journal
“Important to public debate about Wall Street… in exposing what one of his central characters calls the ‘Pandora’s box of ridiculousness’ that financial exchanges have become.”
Entertainment Weekly
“If you own stock, you need to read Flash Boys… and then call your broker.”
Felix Salmon - Slate
“[A] master storyteller.”
Steven Pearlstein - The Washington Post
“Fascinating.”
Hector Tobar - Los Angeles Times
“Lewis, as always, is exceedingly good at describing the complexities and absurdities of the subculture he portrays here… A deeply entertaining book, and one that illuminates how much our world has changed in less than a decade.”
People
“As always, Lewis simplifies the complex—and makes it fascinating.”
San Francisco Chronicle
“Recommended… Entertaining.”
Financial Times
“Remarkable… Michael Lewis has a spellbinding talent for finding emotional dramas in complex, highly technical subjects.”
Vanity Fair
“Michael Lewis knows how to tell a story.”
New York Review of Books
“Entirely engaging… Illuminates a part of Wall Street that has generally done business in the shadows.”
The American Conservative
“Flash Boys richly deserves to be the first chapter in a new discussion of market rules and abuses… Lewis raises troubling and necessary questions.”
Huffington Post
“Michael Lewis is one of the premier chroniclers of our age.”
CNN Money
“Score one for the humans! Critics of high speed, computer-driven trading have a new champion.”
Bloomberg Business Week
“Who knew high-frequency trading was such a sexy subject?”
Lev Grossman - Time
“[Lewis] is a top-flight storyteller.”
Jon Stewart - The Daily Show
“A beautiful narrative, so well-written. You’ve got to get this.”
Kevin Roose - New York Magazine
“Michael Lewis is a genius, and his book will give high-frequency trading a much-needed turn under the microscope.”
John Aziz - The Week
“In 24 hours, I plowed through Michael Lewis' new blockbuster Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt, a book about the huge changes that have occurred in financial markets in the last three decades. It's compelling reading.”
James B. Stewart - New York Times
“When it comes to narrative skill, a reporter’s curiosity and an uncanny instinct for the pulse of the zeitgeist, Lewis is a triple threat.”
Tina Jordan - Entertainment Weekly
“A fast-paced tale backed by gutsy reporting.”
Jon Talton - Seattle Times
“A tour de force that will grab and hold your attention like the best of thrillers.”
Julie Hinds - Detroit Free Press
“Lewis writes about the resilience of underdogs, even in the face of seemingly overwhelming odds. He’s doing essential work, and anything that embarrasses fat cats and encourages reform is a flash in the right direction.”
Will Deener - Dallas News
“Lewis simply tells the truth.”
Zachary Warmbrodt and Dave Clarke - Politico
“Michael Lewis has another hit on his hands.”
Joe Nocera - New York Times
“[Lewis’s] ability to find compelling characters and tell a great story through their eyes is unparalleled. He can untangle complex subjects like few others. His prose sparkles.”
David Sirota - Salon
“If you read one business book this year, make it Flash Boys.”
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2014-04-03
In trademark Lewis (Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World, 2011, etc.) fashion, a data-rich but all-too-human tale of "heuristic data bullshit and other mumbo jumbo" in the service of gaming the financial system, courtesy of—yes, Goldman Sachs and company.That stuff you see on TV about dinging bells and ulcer-stricken traders pacing the floor of the New York Stock Exchange? It's theater. The real speculative economy lives invisibly in little wires that go to nodes in out-of-the-way places, monitored by computer, shares bought and sold by algorithm. If you send a sell order, it might get intercepted for a fraction of a second by an intermediary that can manipulate the order to squeeze off one one-hundredth of a penny in profit—small on the individual level but big when you consider the millions of trades made every day. Both the system and that process are considerably more complex than that, but this fact remains: It dawned on someone that a person could grow rich laying ever faster optic cables to selected clients, cutting deals with the governments of towns and counties "in order to be able to tunnel through them," all perfectly legal if not exactly in the spirit of the market. Lewis follows his tried-and-true methods of taking a big story of this sort and deconstructing it to key players, some on the inside, some on the outside, at least one an unlikely hero. In this case, that unlikely hero is an exceedingly mild-mannered Japanese-Canadian banker who assembled a team of techies and numbers nerds to track the nefarious ways of the HFT world—that is, the high-frequency traders and the firms that engaged in "dark pool arbitrage" as just another asset in their portfolios of corruption.If you've ever had the feeling that the system is out for itself at your expense, well, look no further. A riveting, maddening yarn that is causing quite a stir already, including calls for regulatory reform.
Héctor Tobar
“Lewis, as always, is exceedingly good at describing the complexities and absurdities of the subculture he portrays here… A deeply entertaining book, and one that illuminates how much our world has changed in less than a decade.”
Steven Pearlstein - Washington Post
“Michael Lewis does it again . . . fascinating.”
Philip Delves Broughton - Wall Street Journal
“Important to public debate about Wall Street… in exposing what one of his central characters calls the ‘Pandora’s box of ridiculousness’ that financial exchanges have become.”
John Lanchester - London Review of Books
“Reads like a thriller . . . Lewis is the kind of writer who creates his own weather system.”

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780393244663
Publisher:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date:
03/31/2014
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
89,615
Product dimensions:
6.20(w) x 9.40(h) x 1.30(d)

Meet the Author

Michael Lewis, the best-selling author of Liar’s Poker, The Money Culture, The New New Thing, Moneyball, The Blind Side, Panic, Home Game, The Big Short, and Boomerang, among other works, lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
October 15, 1960
Place of Birth:
New Orleans, LA
Education:
Princeton University, B.A. in Art History, 1982; London School of Economics, 1985

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Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 55 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Flash Boys is a very good book.  Reading it will cause you to think of many things.  Anyone who owns stock or has a 401K with stock in it would profit from reading this book. There is a great deal of information coupled with an engaging story.   Most of us don't even begin to understand what impacts our investments and how Wall Street makes money.  Some of the information is extremely technical both in describing financial transactions and in explaining the technical aspects of software creation and control. I am still not sure I understand it all, but I understand more than I did before I read it. At its heart, it is a story of how a complex system (the stock exchanges) can be gamed.  In this case, it results is high speed trading on the stock market that only a few brokers and banks can use at the little guys expense. The result is a system that, like casinos, is rigged in the "House's" favor.  The story follows a banker who figured out the "game" and his attempts to address it.  Some of the book is very dry, but I still wanted to understand and learn more. Not a lite read...but I did enjoy it and will be interest to watch what happens to the High Speed Trading firms and systems.  Will IEX change things?  What I am sure of is that the gamers will find another hole in some system.    
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very enjoyable and I feel smarter for having read it.  I wouldn't be afraid of the technical stuff. Most folks can understand the speed of light and that,  IMO, is the heart of the technical discussion. I enjoyed reading the names of the firms involved and how they might have been bashed in one chapter and redeemed later.      
Machender More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was exceptionally informative; I'm a securities lawyer and, even though I am familiar with the markets and securities compliance issues, garnered much new information about the technical operation of the markets. Lewis does a great job of conveying technical information in a way that is easily understandable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is informative and a great analysis.
WaldoMK More than 1 year ago
Mr. Lewis can take the most difficult financial material and make it simple enough for you to understand. What could be more confusing the stock market and computers? He explains it in clear terms to simply cutting in line. The ability to purchase all stock that is available because your first and know others are waiting in line should not be fair. Mr Lewis shows there is hope for fairness from of all places Goldman Sachs. A book for all to read even if you do not trade stocks for a living. You have a pension and these "Flash Boys" effect it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A very interesting book. I'm not really into stocks, but perhaps one day. Regardless of that fact, this was an entertaining read about some of the corrupt things going on in the stock market over the past several years and a guy who desperately wanted to change it. This book helps the case for how important it is to have a culture in your organization through the life of the main character (Brad). Overall, I felt this book could be broken into thirds on "drawn in" factor. In the beginning, it was great, I simply couldn't put it down. Towards the middle it just kind of dropped off a bit, it wasn't quite boring but I didn't mind putting it down to do other things. In the end it picked up again, not quite the "can't put it down" factor, but somewhere in the middle of the first 2/3 of the book. I wouldn't call it great but it was definitely a good read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really lays bear the greed and intentions of Wall Street. What ever happened to fairness and the consciousness for doing the right thing for other people? The kinds of values all our parents taught us as children. Looks like it is alive and well in Canada with Brad K, and he instilled it in his team as well. That's the way people in the US use to be. Bravo for Mike Lewis and the people in this book. It's brought the right focus to this High Speed trading fiasco. Great book!!
JBurgess125 4 months ago
Excellent!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you want to understand how the game is rigged while the powers that be do nothing to help the little guy this is it.
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Yo.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book is not all that it seems.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
*Sets on a bed in his motel room watching tv, the door barely open.*
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
An intriguing quick read to see how computers have changed the world of finance.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
ryeLee More than 1 year ago
Interesting read about some unselfish people who use their intelligence for good. Also, a sad portrayal of the current stock market. Good to know stuff, and well worth reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well-written and easy to understand insider's view of the fascinating world of secret high speed trading where microseconds make billions for some. Written from the point of view of fascinating, quirky bright individuals as they slowly uncover the scheme that take billions away from everyday investors with IRAs and 401Ks and puts it into the traders' pockets. Very readable, though there were just 2 or 3 pages that I couldn't quite get and skimmed. Did not take away one bit of my enlightenment or enjoyment of this book. (PS- enjoy the presentation of Canadians and their sensibilities as you read this :) ).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MullyJS More than 1 year ago
For me this was a tough read but these are the books we must take the time to study. Learning doesn't end with school and if we continue to educate ourselves we won't allow ourselves to settle. The men Michael Lewis wrote about in Flash Boys didn't settle. They couldn't give up on a problem they couldn't solve and we are better for it. The riddle they solved allowed us to see our modern shell game that we aren't even invited to play. We are just invited to fork over our losses. Very good book. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago