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42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Male Locker Room Humor about Investment Banking
Before going into my review, let me start with a caution. This book is the grossest, most vulgar business book I have ever read . . . by a very wide margin. This book would have been banned in Boston 50 years ago. If that sort of thing offends you, this book is a minus ten stars. Many women will feel this book is anti-female. On the other hand, if you happen to like your...
Published on 19 May 2004 by Donald Mitchell

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars From lap dances to the ladder of success
From reading this book, it seems for to me to be quite a mixed read. It is definitely a very vulgar and humorous book which does give the essence of the IBD world from one perspective, a very pessimistic perspective indeed.

It does explain the hard long nights coupled with the luxurious pleasures which the IBD world have become very accustomed to but also gives...
Published on 12 July 2007 by Mr. N. V. Adhia


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42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Male Locker Room Humor about Investment Banking, 19 May 2004
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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Before going into my review, let me start with a caution. This book is the grossest, most vulgar business book I have ever read . . . by a very wide margin. This book would have been banned in Boston 50 years ago. If that sort of thing offends you, this book is a minus ten stars. Many women will feel this book is anti-female. On the other hand, if you happen to like your humor male, bold and brassy, this book will be one of the funniest you will ever read.
As someone who often works with investment bankers, the descriptions about how business is sold and delivered should be tempered a bit. This book describes pretty much every investment banker as shoddy, shallow, and manipulative. That has not been my typical experience. There are terrifically smart, talented, ethical and humane investment bankers. For example, one of my favorites never used a pitch book during his first meeting with a client. Pitch book preparation is one of the banes of the young investment banker's existence. But like all professions, investment bankers vary a lot. There are certainly some less capable ones, and I have seen their work too. I would describe it much like the authors do.
In terms of the working conditions, they are mostly a reflection of weak management in the industry. Investment banks reward doing deals, not being good managers of the deals. A fellow I know became CEO of a major investment bank, and made much less money after that than when he was just a deal-maker. He found little interest on the part of his colleagues in improving management, so it was pretty frustrating. It just doesn't pay to work on making life better for the investment bankers in training, compared to producing more business.
The book's main point is that many young people enter investment banking without knowing what it is like, and are overly impressed with the financial prospects. If your values really favor having time for yourself, your family, and developing your other interests, this is probably the wrong career for you. There are plenty of other ways to make lots of money. The richest people I know are entrepreneurs, not investment bankers.
The book's other main point is that you should take a look at close yourself before you compromise too many of your values. The authors should have never joined an investment bank. Having done so, they should have left much sooner.
CEOs and CFOs should read this book also, to know what to check out carefully in the work that investment bankers do. Most companies now develop their own ideas, and just hire the investment bankers for implementation. In that role, fewer problems will occur of the sort described here. Perhaps the most dangerous role is having an investment banker help you select and pursue an acquisition. Many expensive mistakes follow under those circumstances. Caveat emptor!
You will probably find the monkey drawings in the book add to the humor. The text frequently refers to monkey-see, monkey-do type examples, and the whole story is seen more usefully as a bunch of monkeys playing in a gilded cage. That takes some of the sting out of the gratuitous grossness.
If you liked the put-downs of investment bankers in Liar's Poker, this book will be irresistible to you.
After you have had a good laugh, take a look at your current job and see how well it fits your values and life goals. Chances are that it doesn't. Be prepared to figure that out, and move onward and upward out of whatever gilded (or not-so-gilded) cage you are in today into the freedom of self-actualization.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars From lap dances to the ladder of success, 12 July 2007
By 
Mr. N. V. Adhia "Nikhz" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
From reading this book, it seems for to me to be quite a mixed read. It is definitely a very vulgar and humorous book which does give the essence of the IBD world from one perspective, a very pessimistic perspective indeed.

It does explain the hard long nights coupled with the luxurious pleasures which the IBD world have become very accustomed to but also gives good principles on WHAT NOT TO DO and HOW NOT TO SCREW UP and burn out.

Be warned, it is very patriarchal and has obviously been taken from a male perspective!! It does have well, explicit humour but it just makes it even funnier as you read on.

In terms of IBD, it does outline business and basic aspects such as Valuations and Pitches but do remember this is a bias view of two who have left the IBD world and are quite bitter about their experiences and do tend to contradict themselves by criticising others on behaviour which they themselves partake in.

If you want to laugh, this is a book is a "laugh and a half" for each page. From swearing, to lap dances, to midnight runs in the copycentre, you won't be disappointed!

However looking at banking and the IBD world, hmm it's mixed. It is hard, it is a long ride, but so are most jobs. This is a very bias view and anyone going in to it shouldn't just take it on what these two profess.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Frighteningly true, 18 Aug 2004
By 
Justin Murphy (Luxembourg) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
As a former City solicitor, I can say that this book reads very true to life. When you are living in the world described in the book, you think that it's normal. It's only once you get out that you realise it was a bizarre and unpleasant way of wasting years of your life. (Of course, there are lots of other bizarre and unpleasant ways of wasting time, and most of them don't pay so well, so maybe potential recruits shouldn't be put off too much.)

Anyone thinking about becoming a lawyer should turn to page 182: "As junior bankers, whenever we were feeling low, we'd watch the junior lawyers and start feeling better . . ."

Clients of investment banks should read this book too. Exactly why do US banks get 7% commission on new equity issues? I hope companies don't pay that much here in Europe.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Still relevant today, 24 Nov 2009
By 
S. Datta "I wonder if..." (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
Firstly, as others have noted, this is a slightly dated, sexist and extremist view of life as an analyst and associate on Wall Street. If bad language or sloppy writing offends you then it's also probably not worth picking up either. But, at it's a large but, it does manage to capture the heart of junior life in investment banking. Yes, a decade on, things have improved and financial (and other) excesses are less tolerated by the banks than they were but fundamentally the life of a junior banker hasn't changed. And this book picks these up well - the insane work hours, the absence of any social life, the inanity of senior bankers, the ridiculous work processes, the demeaning nature of a good part of the work (e.g. copying, binding, printing) and the general pointlessness of many of the tasks (e.g. 100 page pitch books to clients who have no interest in doing a deal) - all of which still very much go on today. So still very relevant to graduates considering a career in investment banking today. Equally importantly, for investment bank clients it's an interesting insight into the work behind the scenes which generates the advice they receive, and often pay for.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy read - funny but grossly exaggerated, 10 April 2000
By A Customer
Maybe an eye-opener for those on the outside but too close to reality for those of us who work on Wall Street 24/7. Elements are exaggerated (especially the whole sexual frustration angle - there are many happily married bankers) but it does take away a lot of the myth surrounding investment banking. An easy read - worth it, provided you don't take it too seriously.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good book for junior bankers, 25 Jun 2014
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Nothing has materially changed in an IB from when the book was written to today's world for a Junior in July 2014.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoayble to read but there are better books on similar subjects, 10 Oct 2014
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This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
Everybody who has worked in M&A would have very likely go through similar experiences to those the authors include in this book (hopefully not all of them). Being enjoyable to read I think "Liar's poker" is much more interesting and a far superior book.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ACCURATE REPRESENTATION, 18 Jan 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
Now what can I say about this book. If anyone wants to know what life in the Corporate Finance Department will be like, this book is about as accurate as it can get. Its not all about money, but having nerves of steel and a lot of determination. Liar's Poker is about the Trading part of the book and represents an entirely different part of the bank. I did an internship in a bank and was unfortunate not to have read this book before doing so. It would have prepared me a lot better. For all you wanna be bankers, read this book, believe it to the T, and decide whether you wanna sell your soul. ENJOY!
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funniest book about the business - insightful as well, 4 Jun 2004
By 
Bas Röling (Haarlem, The Netherlands) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
This book is absolutely the funniest book I've read about the investment banking business. The sceptical view of the authors results in some very funny descriptions of working situations they experienced. Next to that, the book is also very insightful. It gives you an idea of the day-to-day activities of the people who just started at the bottom of the ladder at a major bank. Therefore, I would especially recommended the book to people who consider a job in investment banking, because these stories are certainly not part of the flashy recruitment presentations of the banks themselves.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real eye opener for "soon to become investment bankers", 21 Nov 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Monkey Business Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle by Troob, Peter ( Author ) ON Apr-30-2001, Paperback (Paperback)
A great book for the ones entering investment banking and thinking they are going to change the world. Good writing style, great sense of humour. Provides a good inside how the IB works.
A real must if you are just about to start your carrier in the IB world.
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