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

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

by Alan Sklar,William D Cohan

  • ISBN: 1400111684
  • Category: Biography and History
  • Subcategory: Perfomance and Work
  • Author: Alan Sklar,William D Cohan
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio; Unabridged CD edition (April 20, 2009)
  • ePub book: 1366 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1216 kb
  • Other: doc lrf docx txt
  • Rating: 4.4
  • Votes: 524

Description

WILLIAM D. COHAN, a former senior Wall Street investment banker, is the bestselling author of. .Cohan's House of Cards is not intended to walk us through every nook and cranny of the housing crisis, or even the systemic mess that took place across Wall Street.

WILLIAM D. COHAN, a former senior Wall Street investment banker, is the bestselling author of The Last Tycoons and the winner of the 2007 FT/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award. He is an online columnist for The New York Times, and writes frequently for Vanity Fair, Fortune, ArtNews, The Financial Times, the Washington Post and the Daily Beast. This is a 450-page play-by-play of the fall and rise of Bear Stearns in particular. Cohan beautifully demonstrates why the seemingly invincible Wall Street money machine came crashing down.

On March 5, 2008, at 10:15 . William D. He chronicles the swashbuckling corporate culture of Bear Stearns, the strangely crucial role competitive bridge played in the company’s fortunes, the brutal internecine battles for power, and the deadly combination of greed and inattention that helps to explain why the company’s leaders ignored the danger lurking in Bear’s huge positions in mortgage-backed securities.

House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street is the second book written by William D. Cohan. It was released on March 10, 2009 by Doubleday. The book chronicles the history of Bear Stearns, from its founding in 1923 to its fire sale to JP Morgan in 2008, following the subprime mortgage crisis. It also gives the reader an inside glance of Bear Stearns senior management and the company's growth into the fifth largest investment firm, before its collapse.

Электронная книга "House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street", William D. Эту книгу можно прочитать в Google Play Книгах на компьютере, а также на устройствах Android и iOS. Выделяйте текст, добавляйте закладки и делайте заметки, скачав книгу "House of Cards: A Tale of Hubris and Wretched Excess on Wall Street" для чтения в офлайн-режиме.

But HOUSE OF CARDS does more than recount the incredible panic of the first stages of the financial meltdown.

Includes bibliographical references (p. -456) and index. How it happened : ten days in March - The ultimate roach motel - The confidence game - "Bear Stearns is not in trouble!" -.

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. Written by William D. Narrated by Alan Sklar. Filled with intimate portraits of the major players, high-end gossip, and smart financial analysis, House of Cards recounts in delicious narrative form the dramatic events behind the fall of Bear Stearns and what it revealed about the financial world's progression from irrational boom to cataclysmic bust. House of Cards is the Rosetta Stone for understanding the dramatic and the unprecedented events that have reshaped Wall Street and global finance in the past two years. Read on the Scribd mobile app.

Sklar, Alan, Cohan, William D. ISBN-13 . The level of detail in this book is amazing and probably only of interest to a very few in the world. The reason? So much of what's covered pertains to finance. House of Cards shows clearly how out of touch the men who work on Wall Street really are. They see dollar signs and testosterone as the only measuring sticks in life -it's all the rest which is immaterial. Barbarians at the Gate still holds the top spot for me as a book that explains the wretched hubris men of finance have. RalphLagana, January 23, 2016.

Honest Trailers Сезон 3, Серия 2 Honest Trailers - The Wolf of Wall Street - Продолжительность: 4:26 Screen Junkies Recommended for you. 4:26.

com A short video about the best selling book "House of Cards" by William Cohan which details the collapse of investment bank Bear Stearns - the first major bank failure leading to the present recession. Honest Trailers Сезон 3, Серия 2 Honest Trailers - The Wolf of Wall Street - Продолжительность: 4:26 Screen Junkies Recommended for you. Земля: Биография планеты.

Cohan details the bursting of the bubble in a book that reads like part gossip columnist, part financial thriller. Talk about making your average Jane feel smart, Cohan makes the big names of Wall Street look like a bunch of rats scurrying about thinking they have won the cheese when really they are about to get the big, gut-popping smack-down. I enjoyed this read because, aside from being mildly fascinated by economics

In March 2008, Bear Stearns, a swashbuckling eighty-four-year-old financial institution, was forced to sell itself to JPMorgan Chase for an outrageously low price in a deal brokered by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, who was desperately trying to prevent the impending catastrophic market crash. But mere months before, an industry-wide boom had "the Bear" clocking a record high stock price. How did a giant investment bank with $18 billion in cash on hand disappear in a mere ten days? In this tour de force, Cohan provides a minute-by-minute account of the events that brought America's second Gilded Age to an end.Filled with intimate portraits of the major players, high-end gossip, and smart financial analysis, House of Cards recounts in delicious narrative form the dramatic events behind the fall of Bear Stearns and what it revealed about the financial world's progression from irrational boom to cataclysmic bust. House of Cards is the Rosetta Stone for understanding the dramatic and the unprecedented events that have reshaped Wall Street and global finance in the past two years.

Comments

Forey Forey
This story went into incredible detail on the Bear Stearns Collapse. Sometimes, too much detail. It not only went into great detail on the day by day happenings that lead to the collapse, which was fascinating, but also went into the life stories of all the major players, which was... not so fascinating, but entirely drawn out. I mean, really, do we need to know the CEO's Bridge Tournament results from 20 years prior? Still, not a bad read for anyone wanting to know about the corruption in Wall Street.
Scoreboard Bleeding Scoreboard Bleeding
Cohan's account of the fall of Bear Stearns is really a bunch of stories within a larger story of excess. I felt this was a related string of stories, and it was obvious when one story would stop and another start. The personalized pieces were far more entertaining to me. For example, everything about Jimmy Cayne was riveting. In contrast, the blow-by-blow description of the days leading to the fall of Bear felt monotonous.

The reader can probably never think of the card game, bridge, in the same way again. In House of Cards, the bridge players were the smartest, shrewdest and most street-smart guys. The made fast friends with whomever needed them. These friendships came to bad endings. The characters didn't finish their elite financial careers with friendships intact. The money was so big, so outrageous that it dominated everything.
Uranneavo Uranneavo
Because the proverbial you-know-what did not really hit the fan until September of 2008 (with the one week period that included the fall of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, and AIG), many seem to forget that in March of 2008, six full months prior, Wall Street lost one of its true gem stones: the illustrious Bear Stearns. Cohan's House of Cards is not intended to walk us through every nook and cranny of the housing crisis, or even the systemic mess that took place across Wall Street. This is a 450-page play-by-play of the fall and rise of Bear Stearns in particular. I say "fall and rise", because in a twist of literary genius, Cohan starts the book with a 150-page minute-by-minute description of the final weeks of Bear. It reads like a murder mystery thriller, partly because the suspense and drama is riveting, and partly because it was, well, a "metaphorical murder", as the hubris of a few particular men, the incompetence of a slightly greater number of men, and the unfathomable selectivity of government decision-making brought down a Wall Street giant.

The book is hard to put down. I am quite certain that I have never read a 450-page book as quickly as I read this one. The behind the scenes look at JP Morgan's decision to buy Bear Stearns that fateful weekend in March of 2008 was accompanied by enough back-and-forth action it would make your head spin. Cohan uses Paul Friedman, the COO of the Fixed Income Division, to lay out the narrative. Readers are given a look under the hood of a weekend from hell, wherein Jamie Dimon, the CEO of JP Morgan Chase (and arguably the most powerful banker in the entire world) several times changed his mind and re-negotiated the purchase of Bear, a company whose two options became: (1) Take whatever deal JP Morgan offers, or (2) Close your doors and turn off the lights.

How does it happen that a company whose book value was $84 per share is forced to accept $2 per share in a desperate attempt to stay alive? How can a company with $18 billion of cash in the bank (their own cash) at the time be on the brink of liquidation bankruptcy? Has the leverage of a deal ever been more one-sided than it was in this case? The answers are far more important than just what they meant to Bear Stearns, for they give us a light on an entire system that became dependent on what is commonly called "overnight funding", and more technically "repurchase agreements". When the creditors of Bear Stearns became petrified that the company was ultimately insolvent, despite their decent cash reserves and phenomenal free cash flows, the rest became completely irrelevant. In a financial system that inexplicably requires every domino to believe the next domino will also work, all it takes is one domino removal to bring a company (or, the world), to its knees. Such was the fate of Bear Stearns.

After walking through the historical record of JP Morgan's purchase of Bear Stearns for $2 per share (moved up to $10 one week later as a result of one of the most comical attorney errors of all time, wherein JP Morgan signed an agreement guaranteeing all the bad debt of Bear Stearns, even if the shareholders rejected the deal!!!!!), Cohan leads us on a 250-page history of the firm, beginning with its infant stages prior to the Depression. The pathologies of the men who led this firm over the years (remarkably, in an entire century, you are only talking about three or four key people) are enough to write thousands of pages on, and you have to be as dysfunctional as I am to find this so entertaining (but I really do). For review purposes, I will skip the myriad of details in this company history, but will simply say that Cohan left me feeling like I have grown up with Jimmy Cayne, the bridge-playing non-college-graduating iconoclast who led this firm for decades. Cohan has a career as a biographer if he wants one, for this was meaty stuff indeed.

The questions that are germane as far as I am concerned are these:

(1) In March of 2008 the Federal Deserve announced a new and unprecedented facility for primary dealers to access the Federal Discount Window. Yet, to this day, no explanation has been provided whatsoever as to why the access to this window would not be available until March 27 (too little, too late, for Bear Stearns). Ideologues can debate until they are blue in the face whether or not this measure made sense at all, but readers are right to wonder why the timing was such that it was exactly on time for everyone else who lived off of repo agreements, and exactly too late for Bear Stearns.

(2) This is not so much a question as a statement of fact. Through no fault of their own that I can detect, the story of this Bear Stearns mess for the bondholders has got to be one of the most miraculous tales of good fortune I have ever seen. Stockholders saw Bear Stearns trading at $170 per share less than a year prior to their collapse, and ended up taking $10. Bondholders, who likely would have received well less than 50 cents on the dollar in a bankruptcy ended up recovering 100% of the par value of their bonds, all interest owed (and still accruing), and in one of the most ironic parts of this story, a 100% gain on stock purchased as well. For the week that Bear Stearns approved the $2 sale to JP Morgan, knowing that shareholders would fight to the death to avoid this pillaging, bondholders began buying the stock above the agreed upon value en masse, purely as a way to guarantee that the deal would happen (as they would acquire enough shares to out-vote the stockholders, and protect their huge debt position). The intent was always to lose money on the stock trade, but simultaneously guarantee that their bond deal got done. In a classic case of winning one every side of the trade, one week later JP Morgan upped their offer to $10 per share, not only giving bondholders their deal, but doubling the value of the stock they had been buying. Sometimes God has a sense of humor.

(3) Tremendous moral questions remain about the propriety of a system that stopped compensating Wall Street titans for advising on client capital, and began risking their own capital. Bear Stearns died for the same reason many other firms died, or nearly died, just six months later: Excessive leverage of their own capital base, with a seeming complete and total ignorance from the men running the ship as to what was going on. I believe JP Morgan will make billions of dollars on this trade, as a $29 billion FDIC back-up to the toxic assets they bought has that effect on deals. Had Bear repo dealers decided to keep Bear afloat a little longer, perhaps they could have de-levered, and reinvented, and lived to fight another day. But when the leveraging of your balance sheet becomes a business model replacement for your operational profit and loss, something has gone astray. Have we learned? More importantly, as my next review will cover, how in the world did Lehman Brothers not learn.

Kudos to William Cohan for a brilliant book. It is non-partisan, historically factual, and leaves the reader scratching their heads at what became of a legend. Life is humbling sometimes. Will the events that led to the fall of Bear Stearns also lead to a new paradigm on Wall Street, a paradigm that prices risk appropriately, that seeks to be paid (extravagantly, as far as I am concerned) for wise advice and capital allocation, or will we suffer through all of this once again? Those who feel that regulation alone can solve this problem underestimate the complexity of the system, and the depths of moral depravity. They fail to see the evolution of a shadow banking system. And they truly underestimate the moral hazard of "too big to fail" and global inter-connectedness. For decades and decades, Wall Street was villainized, and indeed, a bunch of villains existed. But they were demonized because they were making a bunch of money giving advice and allocating capital, and that demonization was wrongly directed. The 2008 demonization of Wall Street was clearly deserved, but not because of a failure to regulate; Wall Street changed. Firms like Bear Stearns that spent decades innovating, and providing the financing during times of municipal stress (see New York in the 1970'), or railroad bonds (see America during the 1940's and 1950's). A new era is coming indeed. What Cohan has helped us do is wonder out loud if the new era will look like the old one or not. It will be good for the whole world to have a strong Wall Street, and not one built like a house of cards.
Nikohn Nikohn
Cohan's House of Cards is a very interesting and detailed account on the reasons behind the infamous Bear Sterns meltdown. His narrative mainly consists of interviewing direct participants with Jimmy Cayne, the former head of Bear, obviously being the most prominent figure.

In the first part of his book, Cohan takes a micro approach, giving the reader an almost hour-by-hour description of the events that led up to the now iconic $2 per share sale of Bear to JPMorgan. In the second part, Cohan takes more of a macro approach, going all the way back to the founding days of Bear and taking the reader through all the major events in the firm's history as well in the lives of those at the helm.

Positives:
What the book does well is provide a very good human angle on the high profile lives of Bear's as well as general Wall Street senior managers. Despite the words "wretched excess" in the title, bashing Wall Street execs is really not the main focus of the book. In fact, I felt that Cohan did a good job staying away from demonizing individuals and from putting on black and white looking glass. I think he provides fair criticism where it's due and backs it up with sufficient evidence such as with the case of Bear Sterns Hedge Fund management. The overall story of the book flows very well, almost like a novel and I never felt like I was reading a non-fiction finance book - there were times where I couldn't put it down.

Negatives:
Cohan does not do a sufficient job explaining some of the financial terms. Upon the introduction of a term, he would give a very superficial explanation for it and then go on using it throughout the book as if the reader now has complete and full understanding of that concept. Basically, I had to look up all the finance terms he mentioned independently on Wikipedia. I know that explaining collateral debt obligations or credit default swaps in dry and boring detail is not the point of the book, but the reader must ascertain a solid understanding of these terms in order to follow some of the points Cohan is trying to make.

Overall:
This is a very interesting and detailed story of not only the collapse of Bear but the general history of the firm, people involved as well as the general Wall Street culture. It's very readable and has a good flow. The biggest criticism is that not enough explanation is given for technical financial concepts - hence 4 stars.