The machines apparently now have the power to pauperise us all -- or at least most of us. The message in Patterson's book is chilling -- and confirms to those who may have been wavering that stock markets are rigged, in favour of the house, with the punters perennially doomed to see their money whittled away by charges, slow execution and lack of information.
Patterson's book has echoes of Roger Lowenstein's When Genius Failed: The Rise and Fall of Long Term Capital Management and Michael Lewis's Liar's Poker (Hodder Great Reads). Stylistically it is well behind both, with Patterson's irritating business magazine punctuation and syntax doing his exposition no service. But when your mind becomes numb to the stylistic/linguistic quirks, the book is an excellent exposition of the way that the markets have changed beyond all recognition in the past twenty years. If the public were to appreciate the the way that the financial markets are now run the weight of anger might just bring the system tumbling down: here is the reason for under performing pensions and casino banking. This book and others like it have the potential to do great service: if more people read this book then maybe a better-informed public would demand change.