Beginning with the "tulipomania" that gripped Holland in the 1630s, Chancellor chronicles the formations and irrational euphoria that can inflate markets, from shares of South Sea stock in England in the 1720s to real estate in Japan in the late 1980s. He characterizes the speculative spirit as one that
loves freedom, detests cant, and abhors restrictions. From the tulip Colleges of the seventeenth century to the Internet investment clubs of the late twentieth century, speculation has established itself as the most demotic of economic activities. Although profoundly secular, speculation is not simply about greed. The essence of speculation remains a Utopian yearning for freedom and equality which counterbalances the drab rationalistic materialism of the modern economic system with its inevitable inequalities of wealth.But it's precisely such inevitability that always seems to win out, when "sharply rising prices followed by sudden panic without cause" bring speculative excess to an abrupt end.
Chancellor makes Devil Take the Hindmost especially relevant to today's U.S. investors by using his analysis of past speculative manias as a lens through which to view the current bull-market binge. No matter what his or her current investment outlook is--bull or bear--anyone with capital to invest would do well to spend a thoughtful weekend with this book. Highly recommended. --Harry C. Edwards --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Reading this book would give anyone a good grasp on the history of speculation.
It is important to understand the behavior and attitudes of politicians, since the laws governing markets are written and enforced by governments.
The book is well written & researched, the footnotes alone would make for an interesting read.
Very good history of financial crises, kind of a narrative version of Manias, Panics & Crashes. I read both as part of my history studies in grad school, and for my first book,... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Jim
A good history of the follies, mishaps, booms, and busts of the financial world.Published 4 months ago by C.L.
Great book. Don't have anything else to compare it to... How many other books are there covering the history of financial speculation. Exactly.Published 6 months ago by Rob
Devil Take the Hindmost by Edward Chancellor is a chronicle of financial speculation. Basically it's a collection of major bubbles from South Sea to the Japanese bubble of the 80s. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Chris Larkin
This is book is for anyone who considers himself an investor. Infact, anyone should read it, to understand that there is no free lunch out there, whether in financial markets or... Read morePublished 10 months ago by B
For anyone who wishes to invest or understand their investment advisor. If you think logic, reason and prudence are the virtues of investing you are a looser from the start. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Michael R. O'Connor
I love the stories (rather I love the facts).
The book tells you how the crooks made money. All investors should read and learn from it. Read more
The more things change, the more they remain the same. A comprehensive historical perspective of financial markets. Read morePublished 19 months ago by Arthur E. Brodie