EDWARD CHANCELLOR DEVIL TAKE THE HINDMOST PDF

Feb 11, Noah Goats rated it really liked it This history of financial speculation is an interesting look at one of the many negative aspects of human nature. We are a species of gamblers, and speculating in the stock market allows us to gamble while fooling ourselves into thinking that we are contributing something to the economy. Chancellor shows how we seem to be unable to stop or even recognize reckless speculation for what it is despite the clear pattern established by history: a new technology or financial instrument or a combo of This history of financial speculation is an interesting look at one of the many negative aspects of human nature. This book was written before the bursting of the dot-com and housing market bubbles, but they followed the same pattern: from hope to greed to irrational exuberance to fear to despair.

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Feb 11, Noah Goats rated it really liked it This history of financial speculation is an interesting look at one of the many negative aspects of human nature. We are a species of gamblers, and speculating in the stock market allows us to gamble while fooling ourselves into thinking that we are contributing something to the economy. Chancellor shows how we seem to be unable to stop or even recognize reckless speculation for what it is despite the clear pattern established by history: a new technology or financial instrument or a combo of This history of financial speculation is an interesting look at one of the many negative aspects of human nature.

This book was written before the bursting of the dot-com and housing market bubbles, but they followed the same pattern: from hope to greed to irrational exuberance to fear to despair. To read it as a book on Speculation alone would be missing the point to some extent. The author sums up his own book in a couple of salient quotes: "Speculation is the name given to a failed investment and As the scale of my operations increased, I was called a Speculator.

Now I am called a banker. The story repeats in history following the same pattern. The author hints at Speculators as the culprit and the need for regulation. But it looks to me that his own book shows that it is endemic to the Free market system because of the above mentioned fundamental human failings. No amount of regulation will be able to stop Speculation.

He said that the next wave of speculation always happens when all the effects of the previous bout of speculation fades in popular memory. There is no point in blaming the Regulating authorities. If they intervene when the market is in a boom, everyone will pillory them for hurting growth and stifling the resulting prosperity.

However, Galbraith suggested that new regulators can step in every few years and bring on new rules so that speculators do not have enough time to exploit the previous set of rules and bring on a crash. But, I think even this is not feasible because often we find that the bureaucracy, Congress, Senate and the Administration filled by ex-Wall Street honchos. So, it is not in their interest to rein in Wall Street.

So, Speculation is here to stay and we better learn to live with it. The book is not a fast paced read. There are voluminous footnotes which distract the reader.

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Devil Take the Hindmost: A History of Financial Speculation

May 31, Rushi rated it it was ok. I thought this was a great book. After 20 seconds, I found myself restarting the exact same thought. Many books have referred to it. However, Galbraith suggested that new regulators can step in every few years and bring on new rules so that speculators do not have enough time to exploit the previous set of rules and bring on a crash. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. A History of Financial Speculation.

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