Customer Review

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars All I need is the beef, 2 Oct 2002
This review is from: Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in the Markets and Life (Hardcover)
As someone who agrees with the Amazon reviews of Nassim's "Dynamic Hedging" that if there's a better book on options trading I haven't read it, I was immensely looking forward to reading "Fooled by randomness". It is however a very different book. Rather than the technical detail of the earlier book, this is more the personal musings of a trader. A collection of anecdotes, quotes and personal thoughts tied together with a few ideas from statistics. It did remind me of his quote in the previous book "I hear you are giving a 4-day seminar on hedging exotic options. Can you give it to me during lunch time tomorrow? All I need is the beef. You see I don't have patience for the details". The book also has agendas, it seems Nassim wants to show that rich traders / successful companies etc. may be just lucky without the converse that poor traders etc may be just unlucky. It also forgets one of the themes of his earlier book about the optionality of being a trader. As a trader other peoples money five years of big profits followed by blowing it all and some more in the sixth year is not a disastrous strategy (the disaster is losing your own money, or being a bank with a trader like this). The "Black Swan" or exceptional event that runs through his book (and which he bases his trading on apparently) could be that there are no "Black Swans" (though I doubt it, particularly at the minute!) The anecdotes and quotes are enjoyable, though I felt there weren't really enough of them to feel quite sated.
All in all an enjoyable read (I read it in a day) but a bit lacking in beef. Not in the same league as "Dynamic Hedging".
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