Wheels of Fortune: The History of Speculation from Scandal to Respectability

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John Wiley & Sons, Dec 22, 2003 - Business & Economics - 368 pages
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Wheels of Fortune is an engaging and original story that traces the rich, colorful, and often scandalous history of speculation in the U.S. financial markets. Set against a backdrop that begins prior to the Civil War and continues through the twentieth century, renowned business historian and bestselling author Charles Geisst takes you on an incredible journey that brings the personalities and strategies behind the futures markets, and speculation in general, to life.

Discover how legendary traders such as Benjamin Hutchinson cornered the wheat market in the nineteenth century, and learn how other bold traders as well as lax regulations paved the way for twentieth-century debacles that continue to tarnish the reputation of the CBOT, the CME, and other related institutions and markets.

The history of the futures market, derivatives, and speculation is full of misunderstandings and false assumptions. Wheels of Fortune seeks to clarify these misconceptions by chronicling the events and individuals that brought scandal and skepticism into the markets, and exploring the laws and governing bodies that were established to rein them in–but lacked the power to do so.

 

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Contents

Acknowledgments
vi
Introduction
vii
A Tale of the Pits
1
Futures and Wild Jackasses
49
The Great Bear Hunt
99
Expanding the Menu
143
Metals and Money
187
Chicago Follies
243
Rouges Gallery
297
Postscript
353
Bibliography
355
Index
360
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

CHARLES R. GEISST is the author of fourteen books, including the bestsellers Wall Street: A History and 100 Years of Wall Street, as well as The Last Partnerships and Monopolies in America. Previously, he worked as a capital markets analyst and investment banker at several investment banks in London and has taught both political science and finance. He has contributed to many journals and newspapers, including the International Herald Tribune, Neue Zurcher Zeitung, and The Wall Street Journal, and has appeared as a guest on many radio and television financial programs. Deals of the Century, also published by Wiley, is Geisst?s most recent book on financial history.

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