House of Cards :  A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street

House of Cards : A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street

Audiobook CD - 2009
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William D. Cohan's superb and shocking narrative chronicles the fall of Bear Stearns and the end of the Second Gilded Age on Wall Street, explaining how a combination of risky bets, corporate political infighting, lax government regulations and truly bad decision-making wrought havoc on the world financial system.
Publisher: [Old Saybrook, Conn.] : Tantor Audio, 2009
ISBN: 9781400111688
1400111684
Branch Call Number: COMP DISC 332.6609 COHAN
Characteristics: digital,1.4 m/s,stereo
20 sound discs (25 hr.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in
Additional Contributors: Sklar, Alan
Notes: Unabridged
Compact disc

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div_dbrl
Feb 25, 2010

This is a fascinating look into the history and collapse of Bear Stearns. Readers without any business background may want to have an Internet connection handy to look up a few unexplained terms, and the further you get into the book, the more convoluted the wheeling and dealing gets. Unfortunately, that's Wall Street for you. There are points in the book where it becomes clear that even the CEO of Bear Stearns didn't even know what was going on, so it's no surprise that even when we're presented with a fairly clear-cut description of the events, it can be a bit confusing.

Of particular interest is the cast of this real-life melodrama. Bear Stearns drew larger-than-life characters to itself, and it's fascinating to read about the clashing egos and hubris that led to the end of Bear Stearns.

This book does run a little long, and is only for those very interested in the crash of Bear Stearns. However, the collapse of BS definitely sent shockwaves throughout the economy as a whole that are still being felt today. If you want to understand the current "economic downturn," and you don't mind slogging through a bit of jargon, this is a great place to start.

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