Lowenstein, a financial journalist and author of Buffet: The Making of an American Capitalist, uncovers and examines the personalities, academic expertise, professional relationships, and layers of numbers behind LTCM's roller-coaster ride with the precision and knowledge of a skilled surgeon. The fund's enigmatic founder, John Meriwether, spent almost 20 years at Salomon Brothers, where he formed its renowned Arbitrage Group by hiring academia's top financial economists. Though Meriwether left Salomon under a cloud of the SEC's wrath, he leapt into his next venture with ease, and enticed most of his former Salomon hires--and eventually even David Mullins, the former vice-chairman of the US Federal Reserve--to join him in starting a hedge fund that would beat all hedge funds.
LTCM began trading in February 1994, after completing a road show that, despite the Ph.D.-touting partners' lack of social skills and their disdainful condescension of potential investors who couldn't rise to their intellectual level, netted a whopping 1.25 billion dollars. The fund would seek to earn a tiny spread on thousands of trades, "as if it were vacuuming nickels that others couldn't see," in the words of one of its Nobel laureate partners, Myron Scholes. And nickels it found. In its first two years, LTCM earned 1.6 billion dollars, profits that exceeded forty percent even after the partners' hefty cuts. By the spring of 1996 it was holding $140 billion in assets. But the end was soon in sight, and Lowenstein's detailed account of each successively worse month of 1998, culminating in a disastrous August and the partners' subsequent panicked moves, is riveting.
The arbitrageur's world is a complicated one, and it might have served Lowenstein well to slow down at the start and explain in greater detail the complex terms of the more exotic species of investment flora that cram the book's pages. However, much of the intrigue of the Long-Term story lies in its dizzying pace (not to mention the dizzying amounts of money won and lost in the fund's short lifespan), and Lowenstein's smooth, conversational, but equally urgent tone carries it along well. The book is a compelling read for those who've always wondered what lay behind the Fed's controversial involvement with the LTCM hedge-fund debacle. --S. Ketchum --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
'A must-read thriller for anyone who works, or invests in markets. It is a story of how arrogance can drive greed and fear to extremes.' Scotsman
'Richly textured and lucid…A riveting account that reaches beyond the market landscape to say something universal about risk and triumph, about hubris and failure.' New York Times
'Lowenstein has written a squalid and fascinating tale of world-class greed and, above all, hubris.' Business Week
'This book is story-telling journalism at its best' The Economist
Very well written and suitable for people with experience of financial markets as well as those without.Published 2 months ago by Aubrey Scott
Would strongly recommend to any one with an interest in business and finance - is almost a page-turner. Fascinating story and wonderfully written.Published 2 months ago by Shantanu
This book should be required reading for anyone curious about the dynamics of hedge funds and capital makers in general - written in a manner which informs and entertains. Read morePublished 3 months ago by James
A well researched and well written account of a high profile financial disaster.Published 4 months ago by Richard Bond
Interesting story, okay written but probably difficult if your are not used to the terms.Published 6 months ago by Rune
Great read. Well written and in a way that makes the complex world of hedge funds accessible even for a lay reader. Builds a greta story around the eventual collapsePublished 8 months ago by Olaf Ransome