Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance

Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance


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Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance by Perry Mehrling


"The story of Fischer Black. . . . is remarkable both because of the creativity of the man and because of the revolution he brought to Wall Street. . . . Mehrling's book is fascinating."

"A fascinating history of things we take for granted in our everyday financial lives."

"Mehrling's book is essential reading for anyone interested in the development of modern finance or the life of an idiosyncratic creative genius."

"Fischer Black was more than a vital force in the development of finance theory. He was also a character. Perry Mehrling has captured both sides of the picture: the evolution of thinking about the pricing of risk and time, as well as the thinkers, especially this fascinating eccentric, who worked it out."
ROBERT M. SOLOW, Nobel laureate and Institute Professor of Economics, Emeritus, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

"Although I worked closely with Fischer for nine years at Goldman Sachs and clearly recognized both his genius and the breadth and originality of his ideas, until I read this book, I had only the vaguest grasp of the source of his inspiration and no understanding at all of the source of his many idiosyncrasies."
BOB LITTERMAN, Partner, Kepos Capital

"Perry Mehrling has done a remarkable job of tracing the intellectual and personal development of one of the most original and complex thinkers of our generation. Fischer Black deserved it: a charming and brilliant book about a charming and brilliant man."
ROBERT E. LUCAS JR., Nobel laureate and Professor of Economics, The University of Chicago

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781118203569
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 12/27/2011
Pages: 374
Sales rank: 1,003,931
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Perry Mehrling is Professor of Economics at Barnard College of Columbia University. He holds a PhD from Harvard University and is the author of The Money Interest and the Public Interest: American Monetary Thought, 1920–1970, and The New Lombard Street: How the Fed became the Dealer of Last Resort. Dr. Mehrling's specialty is the study of financial theory and the history of economics.

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Fischer Black and the Revolutionary Idea of Finance 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Author Perry Mehrling¿s excellent book is not merely a biography of Fischer Black, but also the story of the main threads of economic thought during the late twentieth century. More than that, it is the story of the economics profession, and of the great role that politics and personality plays in the acceptance of ideas. It is astonishing to learn how ruthlessly the profession excluded Black¿s ideas, although he was one of the most incisive economic and financial thinkers of his time, and it is inspiring to see how relentlessly and quixotically Fischer Black continued to press them. The parts of the book that are generally accessible are also fascinating. Unfortunately, far too little of the volume is accessible to the average business reader. Mehrling does a less than adequate job of explaining the great themes of Black¿s life and thought to lay readers. He notes the importance of the Capital Asset Pricing Model in Black¿s philosophy, but his account of the model will leave noneconomists scratching their heads. The same must be said of his account of other economic subjects. While we find that only readers with a fairly deep understanding of economics can reap this book¿s full harvest, that caveat should not deter the general reader from gleaning.