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How Money Became Dangerous: The Inside Story of our Turbulent Relationship with Modern Finance

How Money Became Dangerous: The Inside Story of our Turbulent Relationship with Modern Finance

Written by Christopher Varelas and Dan Stone

Narrated by Roger Wayne


How Money Became Dangerous: The Inside Story of our Turbulent Relationship with Modern Finance

Written by Christopher Varelas and Dan Stone

Narrated by Roger Wayne

ratings:
4.5/5 (50 ratings)
Length:
14 hours
Publisher:
Released:
Nov 5, 2019
ISBN:
9780062930545
Format:
Audiobook

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Editor's Note

A call to arms…

A comprehensive and alarming overview of the history of the financial sector over the past 30 years, as the system went from helping the working class to hurting just about everyone who isn’t a banker or Wall Street insider. A call to arms.

Description

From a veteran of the trade, a provocative and entertaining voyage into the turbulent heart of modern money that sheds new light on the rise of our threatening and complicated financial system, how money became our adversary, and why finding a new course is crucial to a healthy society

In the not too distant past, money was simple. You might have had a bank account and a mortgage, perhaps some basic investments. Wall Street didn't have a reputation for greed and recklessness. That all started to change in the eighties, as our financial systems became increasingly complex, moving beyond the understanding of the general public while impacting our lives in innumerable ways. The financial world began to feel like an enigma—a rogue force working against us, seemingly controlled by no one. 

From an industry veteran who's had firsthand involvement in the events that shaped modern money, How Money Became Dangerous  journeys from the crime-ridden LA jewelry district to the cutthroat Salomon Brothers trading floor, from the high-stakes world of investment banking to the center of the technology boom, capturing the key deals, developments, and players that made the financial world what it is today. The book illuminates the dark, hidden forces of Wall Street and how it has dehumanized and left behind everyday Americans. A fresh and enlightening take on how we reached this point, How Money Became Dangerous also makes the case for why Wall Street needs to be saved, if only to save ourselves.

Publisher:
Released:
Nov 5, 2019
ISBN:
9780062930545
Format:
Audiobook

Also available as...

Also available as ebookEbook

About the author

Responsible for brokering some of the biggest deals in finance, Christopher Varelas was listed among the top 100 dealmakers by the New York Times and was named top technology “rainmaker” by DealMakers Monthly. After working as Citi’s head of technology and then as the head of the company’s National Investment Bank, Varelas left the company in 2008 to cofound Riverwood Capital, a premier private equity firm in Silicon Valley.


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Reviews

What people think about How Money Became Dangerous

4.4
50 ratings / 4 Reviews
What did you think?
Rating: 0 out of 5 stars

Reader reviews

  • (5/5)
    Really infoative but also with a strong narrative attached to it
  • (4/5)
    As a reader, the author was speaking to "the choir.” Through his anecdotes and experiences, he points out many of the flaws of the current banking and investment systems. I was amused by his experience as a child where he put money into a savings account regularly. He later went to withdraw the money, which was admittedly a small amount, only to find out that the account was wiped out due to fees. Bankers are not your friend.

    I found most but not all of the anecdotes to be interesting and informative. The author offers potential solutions for the banking and investment industries, government and for consumers in mitigating corruption, waste and abuse. I think his most powerful point is that people need to understand money and finance much better. This reader who has been in the banking industry most of his life confesses that he really doesn't understand many of the financial terms, products, alternatives and risks involved. I view most investing as gambling – – simply making a bet on chance.

    I enjoyed 80 to 85% of the book – – the other 15% I did not learn anything new or of interest.
  • (5/5)

    1 person found this helpful

    Incredible. The narration was fantastic. The story was interesting and informative. I’ve recommended it to so many people already. Arguably the best book I’ve listened to so far here.

    1 person found this helpful

  • (3/5)
    Christopher Varelas takes us on a journey through his financial career that started out, well actually in Disney World which seems kind of appropriate to many sectors of the financial kingdom and all of its fierce and sometimes scary species. His first venture begins in clerical nature at a BofA in Orange county, CA and rapidly progresses to a wide variety of financial experiences.His first big step is on completion of college and of course Wharton School. Hmmm, isn't there a politician out of there associated with this place? That credential is one of the keys, and literally a key on what he elaborates on, which is access. The ticket to Wall Street where the mover and shaker financial heavyweights play the game. He runs through various positions and on to M&A, and finally wraps up with municipal finances back once again in California with the spectacular meltdown of the infamous but probably forgotten Orange county debacle.Though the books slogs along at times and I stifled many yawns it does succeed in getting some very important messages across of the pitfalls and perils of our exotic and yes dangerous at times financial system. There are too many aspects to go into here, and there many, but two central themes that surfaced again and again were exploitation and accountability.In brief exploitation in financials is shown to be rampant and we kind of know that as it pops up in the news almost weekly it seems. The "system" is designed to foster this condition as the human beings pulling strings to enrich themselves are very much in control and will probably always be working their angles. Accountability seems nearly negligible as the paltry slaps on the hand in way of penalty makes it seem almost quite worthwhile. A lot of those bad guys still walk walkway with bulging pockets of cash. The housing meltdown fabricated by this industry a good example of this. Who paid the price? Not the bank executives. But ultimately the little people on the side streets all over this country who took the brunt of the backlash of this insidious plot.Varelas wraps up the book with the traditional, what should be done finale to offer his recommendations on measures and solutions to correct some of these evils. I snickered at some of them like, "self regulation" within the industry. Of course put the fox in charge to see the hen house to make sure it is properly secured. But he also had some constructive things to say. Like how about some good educational programs implemented right in the high schools to give our young people starting out a fighting chance in dealing with the financial beast they will encounter again and again. Practical education, what a concept.As much as I found the book a bit slow and memoir in nature there are numerous insights into what goes on behind the scenes and backrooms that make it worthwhile for anyone curious about the mysteries behind what so influences everything from paychecks to political pacs.