- Hardcover: 272 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (December 31, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0470442212
- ISBN-13: 978-0470442210
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 1 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 33 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,117,956 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Contagion: The Financial Epidemic That is Sweeping the Global Economy... and How to Protect Yourself from It Hardcover – December 31, 2008
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
From the Inside Flap
During these turbulent economic times, with what could be thedeepest global recession we've ever seen bearing down on us, theone thing you don't need is another book describing how we'vegotten to this point. What you do need are insights into what willhappen going forward and how you can use this information toprotect what really mattersincluding the value of your homeand portfolio as well as the security of your job and way of life.If that is your goal, this book is a must-read.
While the concepts surrounding our current situation may becomplicated, you don't need to be an economic expert to understandwhat's going on and what may happen next. But you do need to beprepared, and the analysis offered here can help both anxiousindividuals who are just starting to realize the magnitude of thisevent as well as those more familiar with finance get through thedifficult times ahead.
Over the course of the last decade, bestselling author andformer investment banker John Talbott's string of accuratepredictions regarding the bursting of the Internet stock andhousing bubbles, the mortgage mess, and downturns in the generaleconomy have been well documented in his numerous books includingSlave Wages, The Coming Crash in the Housing Market, and Sell Now!:The End of the Housing Bubble.
Now, with Contagion, he puts his reputation on the line againand boldy predicts how the current global economic crisis maychange our lives for much longer than politicians care toadmit.
Using a much broader definition of the term "contagion"toinclude financial, governmental, and societal mattersthistimely book offers essential insights that investors, businessexecutives, and concerned citizens must be aware of in order toprotect themselves and their assets, companies, and lives from aprolonged and deep global recession.
Page by page, Talbott explains the history behind our presenteconomic condition and, more importantly, helps us understand wherewe go from here. He explains the severity of the financial andeconomic problems plaguing us and the reasons behind them.
Talbott's analysis of the current financial crisis and its rootcauses extends far beyond simple subprime mortgage lending. Heexplains that all types of lending will be threatened in the bravenew world and that the economy won't recover until banks,businesses, government, and consumers all deleverage and learn tolive with less debt and less consumption. But, Talbott does notstop there. He blames deregulation for allowing the banks to dothis to us, but also blames our government representatives who tookcampaign contributions in exchange for a laissez faire approach tomarket regulation. Finally, he asks each of us to reflect on theimportance of materialism and consumption in trying to define andlive a full and rich life.
From the Back Cover
For more than a decade, bestselling author and former investmentbanker John Talbott has accurately called many of the majorfinancial crises we have faced long before they occurred. In 2003,he predicted the housing market collapse in his bestselling book,The Coming Crash of the Housing Market. In 2006, he foretoldthe peak in housing prices and wisely explained Sell Now!, in atimely sequel to his bestseller. Most recently, he insightfullyprobed the bottom-up economic policies that would guide BarackObama to the White House in his book Obamanomics.
Past is always prologue for Talbott, and his economic reasoningand free-thinking forecasts about the future have captured people'sattention. In his latest book, Contagion, he again warns about whatonce seemed implausible and impossible—the deepest globalrecession the world has ever seen, one that will forever shake theeconomic foundations and social fabric of our lives.
"Talbott is the author of two books that more or less foretoldthe pain homeowners are now experiencing. . . . So far many of JohnTalbott's predictions have been spot-on. But as the housing bustcontinues, homeowners in my neighborhood and beyond have everyreason to hope his prescience proves short-lived."
—Daniel McGinn, national correspondent, Newsweek, andauthor of Home Lust: America's Obsession with Our Homes
"When John Talbott's controversial book, The Coming Crash inthe Housing Market, hit store shelves in 2003, the real estateindustry—and everyone else who stood to profit from thedizzying rise in U.S. home prices—gave it a hostilereception. So, with subprime mortgage loses and credit woes now theno. 1 topic in the markets, what does the former Goldman Sachsinvestment banker see next?"
—Toronto Globe & Mail (September 14, 2007)
With the worldwide financial crisis and economic contagionmutating in ways that foreshadow global economic meltdown, Talbottexplores the necessary government actions and reforms—andstrategies that investors can use—to weather one of the worstfinancial crises in history. Never have Talbott's predictions beenas bold, or his advice about what to do in the future moretimely.
Top customer reviews
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So you don't miss out, here's the summary of investment-related analysis in this book, complete with yet another example of slightly-muddled punctuation: "So, to summarize: cash is king, TIPS, gold, and China are the best bets I can suggest during these coming hard times."
My suggestion? Read his earlier books to understand how we got here (as I'm writing this in 2009, much of what's in this book has already come true anyway). Then get yourself some TIPS, read the Economist, and if you feel the need for more, read something by Robert Shiller or the brand new book by Andrew Smithers. Mr. Talbott, you have a valuable take on the situation and have consistently been prescient; but if you want us to continue shelling out good money for books, get yourself an editor.
Sadly, the means of protecting yourself from this catastrophe are limited since the vast majority of "investments," are still heading down, but the author does point out that cash, TIPS and gold might hold value in the long run, along with judicious investments in China. In the final analysis, we need to cut our national leaders off their lobbyist habits and allow the marketplace and bankruptcy courts to clean up the garbage that has been created.
I found this book to be extremely engaging and enlightening. While I usually read 4 or 5 books at the same time, I couldn't put this one down and finished it in just a day or so. Although the elements of this financial disaster change on a daily basis, the general course of the author's predictions remains true and his observations continue to have merit, even though Treasury's TARP program as described by the author has morphed into a no strings attached Wall Street Giveaway.
Talbott, John R. (2009-01-08). Contagion: The Financial Epidemic That is Sweeping the Global Economy... and How to Protect Yourself from It (p. 86). Wiley. Kindle Edition.
can you elaborate how religious pressure damages our political system. i agree that our political system is broken and will be radically changed in ten years.
I wish I could discover John's books earlier and could have protect all my real estate investments.
He was able to see the housing market crisis coming.
Henry Paulson former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs was able to bail it being a Treasury Secretary, but failed to take care Lehman Brothers?
Who police the police?
His accuracy is frightening because he paints such a gloomy picture of the next few years in America. He blames lobbyists and the government for much of the disaster but he also puts blame on every other Usual Suspect that has helped bring down the United States and global economies. This is a must-read book that is scary but necessary to read. I would hope that our congressmen, President, and every other person in America has a chance to read this. But I doubt if he will be taken as seriously as needed because of his book, "Obamanomics."
I hope he isn't completely accurate but I believe that he will be. And if he is, the next few years will be titled, "Contagion of Chaos."