Fooling Some of the People All of the Time: A Long Short Story

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Overview

In 2002, David Einhorn, the President of Greenlight Capital, gave aspeech at a charity investment conference to benefit a children'scancer hospital. He was asked to share his best investment idea, sohe did. He described his reasons why Greenlight had sold short theshares of Allied Capital, a leader in the private finance industry.Greenlight bet that the stock would decline because the company'sbusiness was in trouble and its accounting was corrupt. Einhorn'sspeech was so compelling that the next day, when the New...

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Fooling Some of the People All of the Time, A Long Short (and Now Complete) Story, Updated with New Epilogue

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Overview

In 2002, David Einhorn, the President of Greenlight Capital, gave aspeech at a charity investment conference to benefit a children'scancer hospital. He was asked to share his best investment idea, sohe did. He described his reasons why Greenlight had sold short theshares of Allied Capital, a leader in the private finance industry.Greenlight bet that the stock would decline because the company'sbusiness was in trouble and its accounting was corrupt. Einhorn'sspeech was so compelling that the next day, when the New York StockExchange opened for trading, Allied's shares remained closed. Somany investors wanted to sell or short the stock that the NYSEcould not balance all the sell orders to open Allied’strading in an orderly fashion.

What followed was a firestorm of controversy. Allied respondedwith a Washington, D.C.–style spin-job— attackingEinhorn and disseminating half-truths and outright lies. Ratherthan protect investors by reviewing Einhorn's well-documented caseagainst Allied, the SEC—at the behest of the politicallyconnected Allied— instead investigated Einhorn for stockmanipulation. Over the ensuing six years, the SEC allowedAllied

to make the problem bigger by approving more than a dozenadditional stock offerings that raised over $1 billion from newinvestors. Undeterred by the spin-job, lies, and investigations,Greenlight continued its research after the speech and discoveredAllied’s behavior was far worse than Einhorn eversuspected— and, shockingly, it continues to this day.

Fooling Some of the People All of the Time is thegripping chronicle of this ongoing saga. Page by page, it delvesdeep inside Wall Street, showing how the $6 billion hedge fundGreenlight Capital conducts its investment research and detailingthe maneuvers of an unscrupulous company. Along the way, you'llwitness feckless regulators, compromised politicians, and thebarricades our capital markets have erected against exposingmisconduct from important Wall Street customers. You will alsodiscover the immense difficulties that prevent the government fromsanctioning politically connected companies—making futureEnrons inevitable. This revealing book shows the failings of WallStreet: its investment banks, analysts, journalists, and especiallyour government regulators.

At its most basic level, Allied Capital is the story of WallStreet at its worst. But the story is much bigger than onelittle-known company. Fooling Some of the People All of theTime is an important call for effective law enforcement, freespeech, and fair play.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Instead of stewing in private, Einhorn wrote a book "Fooling Some of the People All of the Time" about his six-year ordeal with Allied." (Daily Mail, September 18, 2008)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470073940
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 5/2/2008
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 380
  • Sales rank: 543,516
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Meet the Author

DAVID EINHORN is the President and founder of Greenlight Capital, a long-short value-oriented hedge fund, which started with $1 million under management in 1996. Over the ensuing years, Greenlight has generated greater than a twenty-five percent annualized net return for its partners. Einhorn is the Chairman of Greenlight Capital Re, Ltd. (Nasdaq: GLRE) and serves on the boards of the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research and Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life. Einhorn has pledged his entire personal share of the profits from Greenlight's short-sale of Allied and this book to charity.

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Table of Contents

Foreword.

Acknowledgments.

Allied Capital Stock Price Chart.

Who’s Who.

Introduction: The Spark of a Speech.

Part One: A Charity Case and Greenlight Capital.

Chapter 1 Before Greenlight.

Chapter 2 Getting the "Greenlight".

Chapter 3 Greenlight's Early Success.

Chapter 4 Value Investing through the Internet Bubble.

Chapter 5 Dissecting Allied Capital.

Part Two: Spinning So Fast Leaves Most People Dizzy.

Chapter 6 Allied Talks Back.

Chapter 7 Wall Street Analysts.

Chapter 8 The You-Have-Got-to-Be-Kidding-Me Method ofAccounting.

Chapter 9 Fact—Or Maybe Not.

Chapter 10 Business Loan Express.

Chapter 11 Disengaging and Re-engaging.

Chapter 12 Me or Your Lyin’ Eyes?

Chapter 13 Debates and Manipulations.

Chapter 14 Rewarding Shareholders.

Chapter 15 BLX Is Worth What, Exactly?

Part Three: Would Somebody, Anybody, Wake Up?

Chapter 16 The Government Investigates.

Chapter 17 A Tough Morning.

Chapter 18 A Spinner, a Scribe, and a Scholar.

Chapter 19 Kroll Digs Deeper.

Chapter 20 Rousing the Authorities.

Chapter 21 A $9 Million Game of Three-Card Monte.

Part Four: How the System Works (and Doesn’t).

Chapter 22 Hello, Who’s There?

Chapter 23 Whistle-Blower.

Chapter 24 A Naked Attack.

Chapter 25 Another Loan Program, Another Fraud.

Chapter 26 The Smell of Politics.

Chapter 27 Insiders Getting the Money Out.

Part Five: Greenlight Was Right . . . Carry On.

Chapter 28 Charges and Denials.

Chapter 29 Charges and Admissions.

Chapter 30 Late Innings.

Chapter 31 The SEC Finds a Spot under the Rug.

Chapter 32 A Garden of Weeds.

Chapter 33 A Conviction, a Hearing, and a Dismissal.

Chapter 34 Blind Men, Elephants, Möbius Strips, and MoralHazards.

Glossary.

About the Author.

Index.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2008

    A shocking expose

    Fooling Some of the People All of the Time catalogs the incredible events that followed the author's fast rising hedge fund and the investment community that attacked him after sticking his neck out in a speech. The investment community attached to protect its interests, which provides a good lesson in today's financial crisis. The book gives an informative look at the ins and outs of wall street, and the lengths people there will go to attack companies and individuals who attempt to uncover untoward behavior. It's a very interesting, if detailed, read and necessarily so. As an investor and fan of the financial markets, I don't typically read psychology books, but a colleague passed along The Emotional Intelligence Quick Book to me this week when we were discussing the chaos that has befallen the financial markets of late. I devoured that book! It's really great at revealing the role emotions play in ANY decision you make, and I'm a smarter investor for having read it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2012

    Great book and makes easy reading

    Two sides to every story. However, have to admire Mr. Einhorn. Some bad guys in the mix but not all those involved with Allied and BLX deserve to be burned at the stake. If you know any of the players, it makes even more fun reading.

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