Capital Ideas Evolving
"A lot has happened in the financial markets since 1992, when Peter Bernstein wrote his seminal Capital Ideas. Happily, Peter has taken up his facile pen again to describe these changes, a virtual revolution in the practice of investing that relies heavily on complex mathematics, derivatives, hedging, and hyperactive trading. This fine and eminently readable book is unlikely to be surpassed as the definitive chronicle of a truly historic era."
—John C. Bogle, founder of The Vanguard Group and author, The Little Book of Common Sense Investing
"Just as Dante could not have understood or survived the perils of the Inferno without Virgil to guide him, investors today need Peter Bernstein to help find their way across dark and shifting ground. No one alive understands Wall Street's intellectual history better, and that makes Bernstein our best and wisest guide to the future. He is the only person who could have written this book; thank goodness he did."
—Jason Zweig, Investing Columnist, Money magazine
"Another must-read from Peter Bernstein! This well-written and thought-provoking book provides valuable insights on how key finance theories have evolved from their ivory tower formulation to profitable application by portfolio managers. This book will certainly be read with keen interest by, and undoubtedly influence, a wide range of participants in international finance."
—Dr. Mohamed A. El-Erian, President and CEO of Harvard Management Company, Deputy Treasurer of Harvard University, and member of the faculty of the Harvard Business School
"Reading Capital Ideas Evolving is an experience not to be missed. Peter Bernstein's knowledge of the principal characters-the giants in the development of investment theory and practice-brings this subject to life."
—Linda B. Strumpf, Vice President and Chief Investment Officer, The Ford Foundation
"With great clarity, Peter Bernstein introduces us to the insights of investment giants, and explains how they transformed financial theory into portfolio practice. This is not just a tale of money and models; it is a fascinating and contemporary story about people and the power of their ideas."
—Elroy Dimson, BGI Professor of Investment Management, London Business School
"Capital Ideas Evolving provides us with a unique appreciation for the pervasive impact that the theory of modern finance has had on the development of our capital markets. Peter Bernstein once again has produced a masterpiece that is must reading for practitioners, educators and students of finance."
—André F. Perold, Professor of Finance, Harvard Business School
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Page 3 - Political economy or economics is a study of mankind in the ordinary business of life; it examines that part of individual and social action which is most closely connected with the attainment and with the use of the material requisites of well-being.
Page ix - A new system, that is what requires emphasis. Classical economics could withstand isolated criticism. Theorists can always resist facts; for facts are hard to establish and are always changing anyway, and ceteris paribus can be made to absorb a good deal of punishment. Inevitably, at the earliest opportunity, the mind slips back into the old grooves of thought, since analysis is utterly impossible without a frame of reference, a way of thinking about things, or, in short, a theory.3 Herein lies the...
Page 7 - If Program C is adopted, 400 people will die. If Program D is adopted, there is a one-third probability that nobody will die and a two-thirds probability that 600 people will die.
Page 7 - It must be responsive to individuals' preferences. Specifically, if every individual prefers A to B, then society's ranking must prefer A to B. 4. It must be consistent in the sense that if A is preferred to B and B is preferred to C, then A is preferred to C.13 5. Society's ranking of A and B depends only on individuals