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Blood on the Street: The Sensational Inside Story of How Wall Street Analysts Duped a Generation of Investors First Edition Edition

4.3 out of 5 stars 63 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0743250238
ISBN-10: 0743250230
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Editorial Reviews

Review

More than a chronicle of the 1990s tech-stock boom and the ensuing bust ... [it] has "bestseller" written all over it. -- Barron's, February 7, 2005:

There may be no more thorough, or readable, account of [analyst's] foibles than Charles Gasparino's Blood on the Street. -- The Washington Post, February 27, 2005:

From the Inside Flap

"There probably won't be a better book about these events. Notes Gasparino: 'This is a story where there are few heroes, and even fewer people willing to provide an honest account of what went wrong.' Blood on the Street will take most readers as close to the action as they are likely to get--and few will come away comfortable with what they learn." -- BusinessWeek
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Free Press; First Edition edition (January 11, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743250230
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743250238
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 9.2 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,180,280 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
"Blood on the Street," by the former Wall Street Journal reporter Charles Gasparino is a journalism masterpiece. To this end, the author has firmly established himself as one of the "best & brightest" financial journalists in the nation today. Moreover, "Blood on the Street," is a sure bet to command strong attention for several big-time book awards.

On that note, Gasparino is a tireless investigator. His fascinating narrative tells the story of how Wall Street's most powerful investment banking groups (and senior management) often tailored "New Economy," dot com and telecommunication research to win deals that generated hundreds of millions of dollars in fees.

The sad thing about the unsavory/criminal practice is that hundreds of thousands of small investors suffered massive losses because they considered the research honest. However, the frightening aspect of Gasparino's reporting is that the Federal watchdogs at the Security Exchange Commission did little to protect small investors across the nation.

Gasparino's portrayal of the cast is superb. Jack Grubman, the top telecommunications analyst at Salomon Smith Barney and one of the highest paid executives on Wall Street is arrogant, mean-spirited, shallow and not particularly good looking. Henry Blodget, the Merrill Lynch golden boy from Yale (affectionately known as "King Henry," before the dot com bubble bursts) is a talented communicator but way out of his league when it comes to the earnest work of crunching numbers. And Mary Meeker called the "Queen of the Net," by Barron's is "petite, Midwestern, and famously hardworking" according to Gasparino. Meeker is the best of the lot (by far) but still succumbs to the pressure from investment bankers and becomes a "cheerleader" for big fee clients.
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Format: Hardcover
At the end of this fascinating book, it is apparent that "Blood Flows Two Ways". While millions of investors, most of them of the smaller kind, were battered and bloodied by the chicanery and misdeeds of corporate scoundrels and their complicit Wall Street brethern, in the end many of the bad guys were also bloodied. Indeed, one merely has to look at this week's newspapers to observe the forlorn images of Bernie Ebbers, Scott Sullivan and Denis Kozlowski and see how their turn to hemmorage has arrived. This is why it is certain that Mr. Gasparino's book, "Blood on the Street", has "legs" as some people would say. It will continue to capture the public's attention for some time because people care about these stories since so many of them were financially harmed by the events being discussed.

This is an impressive book for many reasons but perhaps what distinguishes it most is the deep level of "inside tract" insight into the thoughts, deeds and motives of the key participants in this sordid story. It is clear Mr. Gasparino has mastered the utility of the modern world of e-mails and the result is the exposure of so many intimate thoughts and actions. If the author helps to make Mary Meeker, Henry Blodgett, Jack Grubman, and Sandy Weil unpopular in the public eye, he is also sure to make Mr. Grubman's salacious e-mail playmate quite popular in certain male circles.

Mr. Gasparino has a gift for following the trail of each story in the book on a comprehensive, fast pace basis and at the conclusion he has the abilty to pull all of the disparate stories cogently together. I look forward to his future books on the topic of corporate malfeasance because we should all know

something that countless investors who are the victims in this story apparently did not know - this type of greedy and dispicable behavior has happened often in the past and will certainly happen again.
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Format: Hardcover
I eagerly awaited this book, as I have been following the Wall Street scandals avidly and was interested in a juicy behind-the-scenes narrative. Frankly I was disappointed. This is a workmanlike account of the Wall Street scandals, but there is an insufficient quantity of new material, particularly if you have been following all the news accounts. Pretty much the only really new stuff was in the Newsweek excerpt.

I did like that he criticized Arthur Levitt for inattentiveness when he was head of the SEC. But there is far too little good analysis and this book really does not deliver on what it promises. It seems to have been written hastily. There are more typographical errors than you would ordinarily expect, as well as little factual errors that are irritating.

For example, he talks on page 215 about Spitzer "indicting" bucket shop brokers. Attorneys general do not "indict." Grand juries indict. Second of all, Spitzer has asked for very few Wall Street indictments and has generally used other enforcement mechanisms.

I would say that if you are looking for a scintillating narrative in the tradition of Barbarians at the Gate, you will be disappointed.
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Format: Hardcover
Charles Gasperino was the reporter who revealed the corruption and scandals of Wall Street in front-page articles for the "Wall Street Journal". This book tells how Wall Street firms swindled billions during the 1990s. President Clinton's tax increase produced low interest rates that fueled the stock market expansion. But this bubble of New Economy stocks would inevitable burst (p.5). What would falling prices for broadband do to the billions of dollars in bonds (p.7)? The ending of corporate pension plans forced employees into the stock market, where individuals faced unforeseen and unknown risks (p.8). This demand caused prices to rise without any increase in underlying values. The culprits, says the author, was the analysts who pumped out research that justified overvalued stocks (p.8). But this is a cop-out; analysts are employees who do as their told. They're only a pawn in this game (p.10). Were investors "greedy"? That's blaming the victim, and admitting to fraud (misrepresenting the value of the item sold). But crooks can stay out of prison by paying off the politicians and the government they control. NY Attorney General Eliot Spitzer exposed this corrupt process. You should read this book if you plan to invest in the stock market, have an IRA or 401K, or wonder about the plan to invest Social Security monies into the next offerings of Wall Street. The average small investor isn't smart or nimble enough to benefit from advertised offerings.

Chapter 1 warns against listening to stock broker's "research": its just advertising designed to get you to buy a product (p.19). Chapter 2 tells how Internet stocks were measured in "hits" and "clicks", not earnings and share prices (p.30).
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