Ron Chernow, the National Book Award-winning author of two astoundingly comprehensive biographies of prominent American financiers, now examines the ultimate decline of such power brokers and the corresponding rise of international money in The Death of the Banker.
This surprisingly concise (but no less illuminating) volume opens with an expanded version of a speech on "the dwindling role of the financial intermediary" that he presented early in 1997; it concludes with condensed versions of his earlier books on J. P. Morgan
and the Warburgs
that show how the essence of financial power has changed in the 20th century.
From Library Journal
Chernow revisits here a period he explored in depth in earlier works: the 19th-century golden age of merchant banking and the likes of J.P. Morgan (The House of Morgan, LJ 2/1/90) in the United States and the Warburgs (The Warburgs, LJ 9/1/93) in Europe. His work grew out of a lecture in which he maintained that "the salient fact of 20th-century finance will be the sharp erosion of banker power." What he meant was the passage of "relational" banking, where bankers had ongoing relationships with their clients, to a "transactional" type of banking, where all bankers are competing for the same work. To justify his point, he here profiles both the Morgan and Warburg banks in two separate essays. While both are well written, one wonders why he's reinvented the wheel. His two previous books on Morgan and Warburg are brilliant and masterly, yet his condensation of their lives for his new book, while highly readable, makes the reader hunger for more. Appropriate for larger business collections.?Richard Drezen, Washington Post News Research Ctr., Washington, D.C.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.