Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

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W. W. Norton & Company, Mar 31, 2014 - Business & Economics - 274 pages

Four years after his #1 bestseller The Big Short, Michael Lewis returns to Wall Street to report on a high-tech predator stalking the equity markets.

Flash Boys is about a small group of Wall Street guys who figure out that the U.S. stock market has been rigged for the benefit of insiders and that, post–financial crisis, the markets have become not more free but less, and more controlled by the big Wall Street banks. Working at different firms, they come to this realization separately; but after they discover one another, the flash boys band together and set out to reform the financial markets. This they do by creating an exchange in which high-frequency trading—source of the most intractable problems—will have no advantage whatsoever.

The characters in Flash Boys are fabulous, each completely different from what you think of when you think “Wall Street guy.” Several have walked away from jobs in the financial sector that paid them millions of dollars a year. From their new vantage point they investigate the big banks, the world’s stock exchanges, and high-frequency trading firms as they have never been investigated, and expose the many strange new ways that Wall Street generates profits.

The light that Lewis shines into the darkest corners of the financial world may not be good for your blood pressure, because if you have any contact with the market, even a retirement account, this story is happening to you. But in the end, Flash Boys is an uplifting read. Here are people who have somehow preserved a moral sense in an environment where you don’t get paid for that; they have perceived an institutionalized injustice and are willing to go to war to fix it.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Library_Lin - LibraryThing

I know next to nothing about trading and finance. And whenever anyone tries to explain it to me, my eyes won’t focus. So, I was hesitant to pick up this book. But, while a few passages explaining what ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - reenum - LibraryThing

I usually love Lewis's books, but this one started to drag. The extensive explanations of how data has to travel and the esoteric details of laying fiber optic cable were not enough to hold my interest. A rare miss. Read full review

Contents

INTRODUCTION WINDOWS ON THE WORLD
1
CHAPTER
7
WALL STREET
151
Acknowledgments
273
Copyright

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About the author (2014)

Michael Lewis is the best-selling author of Liar's Poker, Moneyball, The Blind Side, The Big Short, The Undoing Project, and The Fifth Risk. He lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.