History of Greed: Financial Fraud from Tulip Mania to Bernie Madoff

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Wiley, Jul 30, 2010 - Business & Economics - 336 pages
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"David Sarna is a visionary technologist. He is also a sophisticated investor and financier. He has written a readable, comprehensive, fascinating, and well-researched book that explores troublesome aspects of the financial system in a way only an experienced insider could."
Jay N. Goldberg, Senior Managing Director, Hudson Ventures

"A comprehensive review of what has happened to us in our financial markets over and over and over and over again. It's an important history, written with wit and delivered with wisdom. Undoubtedly, History of Greed will become required reading for anyone serious about understanding the capital markets."
Frederick L. Gorsetman, Founder and Managing Member, Oxbridge Financial Group, LLC

400 years of financial fraud in the making

From the earliest financial scams of the seventeenth century, through the headline-grabbing Wall Street scandals of our times, History of Greed provides a comprehensive history of financial fraud. In it, David E. Y. Sarna exposes the true and often riveting stories of how both na´ve and sophisticated investors alike were fooled by unscrupulous entrepreneurs, lawyers, hedge fund managers, CPAs, Texas billionaires, political fundraisers, music managers, financial advisers, and even former Mossad agents. From the people behind the financial fraud and how they did it to why people continually fall prey to scam artists, Sarna outlines what actions you can take today to protect yourself from becoming the victim of tomorrow's "too good to be true" investment opportunity. History of Greed details how markets are manipulated, books are cooked, Ponzi schemes are hatched, and how the government only closes the barn door once the cows have all escaped.

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(Reviewed by Shawn Edwards for www.AuthorExposure.com)
"The History of Greed" is a non-fiction account by David E. Y. Sarna of high dollar financial fraud in the modern era, explaining various
methods con men employ to abuse investors as well as detailing particular instances of schemes and the aftermath. Sarna describes at length the fraud and recent conviction of Bernard Madoff; readers might remember news coverage of Madoff, charged in 2009 with orchestrating a Ponzi scheme involving over $170 billion.
For those interested in learning about the pitfalls investors face from fraudsters, ?The History of Greed" is an excellent resource. Sarna is knowledgable of the financial field and provides information, evidence, and statistics about everything he discusses. Included at the end of the book is a bibliography composed primarily of online sources which researchers will find invaluable, thorough, and lengthy. This book presents scams from the investor's, the scammer's, and the regulator's perspective so that investors will understand how to identify possible scams and how regulators can help protect investors.
Readers who are only casually interested in the topic, however, may not enjoy "The History of Greed" from cover to cover. The author focuses on information at the expense of readability; while readers may enjoy learning how scams are run, they will have to push through Sarna's examples which often begin similarly and end identically. The title is also a bit of a misnomer. Less than ten percent of the book describes events before the 20th century, but most people would agree that greed has existed much longer than that. A more apt title would have been "Greed in Modern Times".
"The History of Greed" is an informative book that researchers and finance aficionados will love. For those who are interested in the topic, especially the Madoff fraud, this will be a book to borrow, not buy.

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About the author (2010)

David E. Y. Sarna is a serial entrepreneur who founded three companies, sold one, and successfully took two public. He is also a technologist and a writer. Mr. Sarna is also the creator of several popular blogs, including GreedWatcher.comSM, GoogleGazer.comSM, and EyeOnTheCloud.comSM. He has authored four books, written over 120 articles, was a founding regional director of the Microsoft Developers Network, and is a popular and award-winning speaker with multiple national television appearances on Fox, CNN, and MSNBC.

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