Discusses why Wall Street is doomed to fail in the 1990s and discusses how that failure will affect the lives of people who invest their money and those who manage it
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Haphazard critique much exaggerating the latter-day difficulties of the financial-services industry without addressing the implications of its ongoing--and convulsive--restructuring. Gibson (a Forbes senior editor) seems to equate Wall Street with the commercial investment banks clustered in lower Manhattan, but he turns to foreign brokerage houses, portfolio managers, mutual-fund groups, and commodities or stock exchanges when it suits his purposes. Arguing that old-line firms are in mortal danger, the author offers an audit of such problems as overcapacity, global competition, ineffectual regulation, ongoing advances in technology, resistance to change, and a willingness to incur substantive risks to collect the handsome fees or trading profits needed to offset a precipitous decline in commission dollars. In aid of his thesis, Gibson covers a lot of old ground, including Salomon's rigging of Treasury bond auctions and the delinquent bridge loans still on the books at overly venturesome securities firms. But he fails to explain what a make-over of the money game's once-clubby establishment might mean for individual and institutional investors, let alone private enterprises that need to raise debt or equity capital. In some cases, moreover, he appears not to know what he's talking about--e.g., in covering GICs Gibson refers to them as guaranteed income ``certificates'' (rather than ``contracts,'' as is proper). Nor is he always consistent: he asserts that spreads on fixed-income instruments have shrunk since Michael Bloomberg began vending detailed price data by wire; later, he quotes without disputing an analyst who concludes: ``Spreads are widening in all markets.'' Gibson goes hunting for bear--but his aim is way off the mark. -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Library Journal:
Long a global center for financial transactions, Wall Street began to lose its unique identity through a combination of scandal, regulatory change, and technological innovation. Elimination of fixed commissions in 1975 was one of several factors that has led to the continuing migration from New York City's famed financial district. Predicting a future in which individuals will trade in markets different from those in which professionals trade, consultant Gibson is gloomy about what lies ahead. Without a more balanced report that includes many of the positive changes that have taken place in the financial industry, this book remains a confused rehash of well-covered scandal and failure. Not recommended.
- Joseph Barth, U.S. Military Acad., West Point, N.Y.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Jun 01, 1993, 1993. Book Condition: New. HC 1st edition / 1st printing. FINE in Fine wraps (dust jacket.) Cover as shown. As new. Bookseller Inventory # 08111108
Book Description Atlantic Monthly Pr, 1993. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M0871135345