A First-class Catastrophe

A First-class Catastrophe

The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History

Book - 2017 | First edition.
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The definitive account of the crash of 1987, a cautionary tale of how the U.S. financial system nearly collapsed-- f rom the bestselling author of The Wizard of Lies

Monday, October 19, 1987, was by far the worst day in Wall Street history. The market fell 22.6 percent - almost twice as bad as the worst day of 1929 - equal to a one-day loss of nearly 5,000 points today.

Black Monday was more than seven years in the making and threatened nearly every U.S. financial institution. Drawing on superlative archival research and dozens of original interviews Diana B. Henriques weaves a tale of missed opportunities, market delusions, and destructive actions that stretched from the "silver crisis" of 1980 to turf battles in Washington, a poisonous rivalry between the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and the almost-fatal success of two California professors whose idea for reducing market risk spun terribly out of control. As the story hurtles forward, the players struggle to forestall a looming market meltdown and unexpected heroes step in to avert total disaster.

For thirty years, investors, regulators, and bankers have failed to heed the lessons of 1987, even as the same patterns have resurfaced, most spectacularly in the financial crisis of 2008. A First-Class Catastrophe offers a new way of looking not only at the past, but at our financial future as well.

Publisher: New York, NY : New York Times Book/Henry Holt and Company, 2017.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781627791649
Branch Call Number: 332.64273 Hen
Characteristics: xviii, 393 pages ; 25 cm


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Jan 29, 2018

This book is an enjoyable enlightening read about the US financial system and how precarious it is. Some of the financial products are hard to understand. The author's conclusion is that the lessons learned have not been applied. We should not be surprised if there are future meltdowns and near collapses.

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