The Wrong Answer Faster: The Inside Story of Making the Machine that Trades Trillions

Overview

The incredible true story behind the development of computerized trading on Wall Street from the man who began it all, The Wrong Answer Faster: The Inside Story of Making the Machine that Trades Trillions offers an unprecedented, firsthand account of one of the greatest revolutions in financial history. In 1967, moving from Chicago to New York in hopes of making his mark on the world, Michael Goodkin notices by chance there are no computers on Wall Street. Drawing on his teenage trading experience that no one ...

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2012 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. 326 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: General/trade.

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2012 Hard Cover New in New jacket 8vo-over 7?"-9?" tall. Brand new copy. Dispatched within 24 hours of receiving the order. *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an ... authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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Overview

The incredible true story behind the development of computerized trading on Wall Street from the man who began it all, The Wrong Answer Faster: The Inside Story of Making the Machine that Trades Trillions offers an unprecedented, firsthand account of one of the greatest revolutions in financial history. In 1967, moving from Chicago to New York in hopes of making his mark on the world, Michael Goodkin notices by chance there are no computers on Wall Street. Drawing on his teenage trading experience that no one knows the right price for anything, he sees the opportunity to earn investors a consistent profit by joining his instinct for gambling with the expertise of future Nobel laureate economists and the speed of a computer to calculate the wrong answer faster than the professionals.

From that moment onward, Goodkin's ascent was precipitous, within one year propelling him from holes in the soles of his shoes to a Park Avenue penthouse, and in The Wrong Answer Faster, he tells the remarkable story for the first time. Goodkin changed the financial world with one company, left to travel the globe and play backgammon, and eventually returned to Chicago once again to found a second groundbreaking business that has cemented his reputation as an innovation genius.

The untold story of how one man with a great idea decided not to play the market but to revolutionize the financial world by creating the most vital trading tool since the ticker tape, The Wrong Answer Faster goes inside one of the most remarkable stories of our time. From strategizing with his team of eminent economists, almost crashing in a plane with Carl Icahn, and playing backgammon with Bernie Cornfeld to being shown the door by Sir Sigmund Warburg who thought the idea of using a computer to trade the market was utterly preposterous, the book details the inspiring journey of a man who literally revolutionized the way the money game is played.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A fascinating book that chronicles the life of this man who had the foresight to understand the potential of harnessing the power of the computer and who has thereby revolutionised the trading basis of the financial markets in his lifetime."—FT Advisor, 28th June 2012

“Even after the 2008 crisis proved that many of the banks’ computer-based models were flawed, computers and “rocket scientists” still play a major role on Wall Street. They have pioneers like 70-year-old Michael Goodkin to thank. On paper, Goodkin was an unlikely revolutionary. . . he was one of the first to spot that computers could be used to automate trading. Goodwin made millions, but he received little public credit. . There are no trading tips or secret formulae in the book. Instead, it’s what Jordan Simm in Canadian Business calls a ‘traditional coming-of-age tale’. But, as Simm points out, ‘the story is anything but conventional’, providing a window into a time when Wall Street was a very different place. Goodkin’s blunt style makes him an engaging writer, while few others have gone from street hustler to high finance via such an interesting path.”—MoneyWeek

“A Bildungsroman, one jacket blurb calls this book—and sure, it’s a traditional coming-of-age tale. But the story itself is anything but conventional. The pleasures of the book lie in the story of their bumpy path to success.”—Canadian Business

"Michael Goodkin brought the first computer to Wall Street sparking a financial revolution - proving it isn't what you know, but how fast you know it. Here's how his story began..."—Hedge Magazine

“In this rags-to-riches tale, Goodkin recounts the story of how he created a computerised trading system that revolutionised Wall Street in the late 1960s. It is an inspiring story of how a young man with no money or career assembles a group of smart economists and investors and creates a new business that transforms a whole industry. Here, bold ambition triumphs over mediocrity…” —The Irish Times

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781118133408
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/21/2012
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 326
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Michael Goodkin, a successful gambler, failed investor, and mediocre student, was advised by his high school guidance counselor to become a plumber. Eight years later, in 1968 he combined his knack for gambling and lessons learned as a failed investor with the expertise of future Nobel laureate economists to found the company that introduced computerized trading to Wall Street. After seeing the world as a professional backgammon player, in 1996 he founded the software company that pioneered the application of computational physics to financial derivatives. A lecturer at forums including the University of Chicago and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Goodkin holds a JD from Northwestern University and an MBA from Columbia University. The author of Paper Gold, a bestselling novel of financial intrigue, he lives in Chicago.

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Table of Contents

Prologue 1

Chapter 1 High School Hustler 9

Older Doesn’t Mean Smarter, and Bigger Doesn’t Mean Better 10

My First Bank Account 15

Working in the Off-Season 16

The Bill Collector 20

Sundays on Maxwell Street 24

Birth of a Banker 26

Graduation Day 31

Chapter 2 The Late Bloomer 35

Harvard on the Rocks 39

Home for the Holidays 41

The Rat Practical 43

Developing a New Perspective 45

Politics Is Politics 50

Moving to the Downstate Campus 54

Leaving on a Jet Plane 58

Chapter 3 Leading a Double Life 75

In the Mayor’s Office 79

The Best of the Worst 82

Preparing for the Worst 86

Becoming a New Yorker 89

Chapter 4 A Big Idea 91

Still Daydreaming after All These Years 95

The Wrong Answer Faster 97

Mispriced Merchandise 100

Chapter 5 Chasing Venture Capital 109

Shelly Likes the Horse 112

The Problem Is with the Jockey 120

Shelly Takes a Flyer 121

The Guy without the Money 123

Negotiating My Terms 125

Chapter 6 Banking the Venture Capital 127

A Phone with a View 128

Recruiting Shelton 132

Meeting an Investor 141

Quitting Time 143

Hiring Lawyers and Accountants 145

Money by a Nose 147

Miles to Go 153

Chapter 7 Stepping Out in the World 157

Recruiting the Brain Trust 163

I Can’t Even Give It Away 172

Worth More Dead than Alive 174

Chapter 8 Making the Impossible 177

One Door Closes and Another Door Opens 178

Turning Luck into a Craft 182

Changing Jockeys in Midstream 185

Conducting a Symphony Orchestra 186

Person-to-Person Call for Dr. Shelton 187

Turning on the Lights 189

Targeting the Wrong Market 191

Chapter 9 If I Were a Rich Man 195

Rich People Play Backgammon 201

Entering a Parallel Universe 203

The New York Circuit 204

Stretching Rubber Bands 206

The King and I 208

Looking in All the Wrong Places 211

Fishing in Seattle 217

The Best Execution in the Business 220

Chapter 10 Too Good to Be True 223

Snagging an Invitation to London 225

An American Capitalist in Sir Sigmund’s Court 229

The Swiss Connection 233

Closing the Deal 237

Creating a Competitive Bid 244

Graduation Ceremony 248

The Year of Transition 249

Chapter 11 Breaking Away 251

Backgammon and Business 253

Not the Man I Used to Be 259

Chapter 12 Does God Play with Loaded Dice? 269

Back to the Futures 271

Accessing the World of Master Physicists 272

Examining the Dice 277

Chapter 13 Making Physics into a Business 283

Home Alone 289

Seed Money 292

The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming 296

A Made Man 300

If You Build It They Will Come 301

Running on Empty 306

Entering the Big Leagues 311

Everything Is Connected 312

Time to Get Out of the Way 315

Epilogue 317

Acknowledgments 319

Index 321

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