Eyewitness to Wall Street: 400 Years of Dreamers, Schemers, Busts, and Booms Hardcover – 27 Aug 2001
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
It's no exaggeration to regard it as a story book. Somehow the reality is more harsh and crueler than fictitious TV drama and movies, and the history of the investment world is surely no exception.
Back to the book. This is in fact an excellent collection of writings from books, journals amd newspapers of different witnesses to the author's selection of major debacles of the past four centuries. There are twelve parts of unequal period, with a timeline of critical incidents in the beginning of each part, followed by selected witness reports as mentioned above. Certainly, not everything could be accounted detailedly (so I would like to recommend "Devil Take the Hindmost: A History of Financial Speculation by Edward Chancellor", a book that dug deeper but not as wide) but readers certainly would have a very correct idea of what went wrong.
As a CFA charterholder (not yet, passed all three levels of exam but not paid the fees), I strongly recommend AIMR to put this book into the required list of reading to warn its members of the limitation of the financial techniques or theories or calculations or integrity stuff we try to preach. Anyway, a must read for anyone, especially serious players!
p.s. One minor drawback: Soros was not there. He should have been.
To be fair, the book emphasizes eyewitness. Eyewitnesses are difficult to find, hence a lot of important events on Wall Street are left out.
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