- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Mariner Books; Reprint edition (April 30, 1997)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0395859999
- ISBN-13: 978-0395859995
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 195 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,627,745 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Great Crash of 1929 Reprint Edition
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Rampant speculation. Record trading volumes. Assets bought not because of their value but because the buyer believes he can sell them for more in a day or two, or an hour or two. Welcome to the late 1920s. There are obvious and absolute parallels to the great bull market of the late 1990s, writes Galbraith in a new introduction dated 1997. Of course, Galbraith notes, every financial bubble since 1929 has been compared to the Great Crash, which is why this book has never been out of print since it became a bestseller in 1955.
Galbraith writes with great wit and erudition about the perilous actions of investors, and the curious inaction of the government. He notes that the problem wasn't a scarcity of securities to buy and sell; "the ingenuity and zeal with which companies were devised in which securities might be sold was as remarkable as anything." Those words become strikingly relevant in light of revenue-negative start-up companies coming into the market each week in the 1990s, along with fragmented pieces of established companies, like real estate and bottling plants. Of course, the 1920s were different from the 1990s. There was no safety net below citizens, no unemployment insurance or Social Security. And today we don't have the creepy investment trusts--in which shares of companies that held some stocks and bonds were sold for several times the assets' market value. But, boy, are the similarities spooky, particularly the prevailing trend at the time toward corporate mergers and industry consolidations--not to mention all the partially informed people who imagined themselves to be financial geniuses because the shares of stock they bought kept going up. --Lou Schuler
"[A] skilled analysis of that most memorable year in our economic history." (St. Louis Post-Dispatch )
"Most intriguing for its depiction of the delusion that swept the culture, and the ways financiers and bankers, wishful academics and supine regulators willfully ignored reality and in the process encouraged the epic collapse of the stock market." (New York Times )
"Paints a vivid picture of how the supposedly rational capitalist system seemed to lose its collective mind, and it has spooky parallels with what we are witnessing now." (Fortune ) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
The book does a great job telling the story of the stock market crash of 1929. You will learn that there were many rallies and rebounds and that it was not straight down. You will here how political leaders and prognosticators reassured the public that the "economy was sound". You will see how the crash brought to surface many frauds in the investment community. Surprisingly the suicides of this time period were greatly exaggerated in myth, with no more than the usual amount in the populace with a few high profile ones about the same as in 2008.
Very simple easy to read book that will teach you about irrational exuberance, greed, and fear through the story of that fateful year of 1929.