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Thriving in the New Economy: Lessons from Today's Top Business Minds
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Imagine you're friends with some of the most intellectually stimulating and financially successful people in the world and you invited them all to dinner one night. Imagine they came and took turns sharing their greatest insights into the sources of the financial crisis, where we are today and what the best opportunities are going forward. And finally imagine someone could write it all down and get this salon published as a guide for the rest of us. That's pretty much what you've got in Lori Ann LaRocco's new book, "Thriving in the New Economy." The guests in this salon are definitely the "A List" including Larry Lindsey, Wilbur Ross, Rudy Giuliani, Wayne Huizenga, Bob Doll and many others. And the conversation is lively thanks to LaRocco's guest selection, personal relationships and conversational prompts. Larry Lindey tell us that IQ points and academic achievements are not enough to provide good economic stewardship; you need real world market experience and a feel for what markets are actually telling you. He warns against the dangers of cognitive bias and gives us tips for maintaining an objective, analytic approach free of ideological baggage. The contribution of Wilbur Ross is fascinating. We all know the chronology of the meltdown too well from Bear to Lehman to AIG. Ross goes over this ground not just as a simple chronology but by retracing his mental processes as he first minimized dangers in his own portfolio and then maximized opportunities in seeking gems amid the financial wreckage. We each remember what we thought when we heard about AIG but actually getting inside Ross's head for a play-by-play account of how he alerted the CEO's in his existing portfolio companies to cuts costs, cut investments and lower projections and then pivoted to look at the most beaten down sectors - mortgages, monoline insurance and banks - and systematically pulled diamonds out of the dirt is fascinating. It shows how the smart money got that way and how it stays that way. Paul McCulley of PIMCO takes us inside the "new normal". We've all heard about it but McCulley outlines the dynamic tension between capitalism (which he calls efficient but non-democratic) and democracy (which he says is fair but messy) and shows how government is swinging the pendulum toward the latter in ways that have huge implications for investors. The book does not just focus on finance but moves through real estate, retail and manufacturing with the same panache and insight so that we get an overview of the new economy emerging from the crisis of 2007-2009. And Rudy Giuliani reminds us how beaten down New York was by the late 1980's and how leadership and vision can turn around even a seemingly hopeless situation; something to bear in mind as we face hard times ahead. Bravo to Lori Ann LaRocco for using her vision, contacts and savvy to put together this top notch salon in book form which we can all enjoy and learn from. It's as if we're at the table with the smartest and most seasoned operators, but better, because we can turn to this book as a valuable guide time and time again.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on July 6, 2010
As a producer of a fast-growing radio show, I've read through many, many books of potential guests looking to get airtime. A majority of the works I receive are fluff and unoriginal. Lori Ann's new book is quite the opposite, however. Clearly, her time at CNBC has served as a valuable tool in expressing her thoughts and information in a clear and coherent manner. "Thriving in the New Economy" gives readers an insight from top experts and leaders who have talked the talk and walked the walk. A must-read masterpieces this is. Enjoyable and loving, insightful and captivating.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 3, 2010
As a Ph.D. in mathematics, a computer scientist and an investor in equities and currencies,I admit, my economist daughter is likely right--I am a bigger nerd than she. But Lori Ann LaRocco's book is not just for the quant guys, nor the algo gals, but for the everyday Jane or Joe who wants to pick the brains of the greatest business minds of the last four decades. Number crunching is something I am very good at; but, how to look at the big picture, seize the moment, and capitalize on what was potentially the collapse of the world's economies is a lesson that I learned from the 23 great minds that Lori Ann features in her book. Without giving away too much, I was mesmerized by Pimco's Paul McCulley, who not only talks about how to thrive in the new economy but defines the "new normal". Peter Cohen's frank assessment of the Lehman Brother's collapse hints at what I suspect may have happened. Larry Lindsey talks about the challenge to investors as more power is shifted to Washington--the hazards of greater government involvement in business. Vanguard founder Jack Bogel invests one hundred percent of his money in his own funds and shares how it is allocated. Bob Doll admits that we may be in the middle of another "16 year flat period" for equities; while he views inflation not deflation as the greater threat. Not surprising is the accuracy of the predictions that nearly all of these men and women make as to the course of the markets and the economy over the short term and their nearly unanimous optimism over the long term. It was a pleasure to learn from them and the likes of Steve Forbes, Abby Joseph Cohen and Richard LeFrak to name a few. I find myself picking up the book from time to time and rereading some of my favorite passages when I need inspiration.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on September 28, 2010
To hire Bob Doll or Wilbur Ross or Ken Langone or Richard LeFrak to speak to you on a variety of topics. Lori Ann LaRocco has captured that in this book. As self made financially independent INVESTOR who owns his own worldwide investing school and writes one of the top safe high yield investing newsletters in the world I understand quality. Unlike some politician pundit or academia nut who fills the airways today, these are the EXPERTS in their field. Lori Ann's tireless desire to make this great is evident to even the most casual reader. I am not only recommending this on here but will recommend it on my investing website as well.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 2, 2011
This book was more about what happened after the crisis and what they did vs. what we should expect now. I think this would have been a great book to read right after the financial crisis, but outdated now. It was insightful to hear some of the stories of how some of the great minds looked at the financial crisis, but this book has a definate shelflife in my opinion, and that time is up.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on April 6, 2011
"...the everyday Jane or Joe who wants to pick the brains of the greatest business minds of the last four decades." describes me perfectly. To be able to get advice from the giants that Lori Ann has interviewed for her book is priceless. The everyday Jane or Joe does not have access to the wisdom given in her book anywhere else. She has done a major service for those of us who are finding our way on our own around the markets today. Between this book and the persons she books for Squawk Box she continues to do yeoman's work for us little gals/guys. Her valued work successfully gives us the tools we need to gain an edge otherwise denied to us.
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