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Backstage Wall Street: An Insider’s Guide to Knowing Who to Trust, Who to Run From, and How to Maximize Your Investments Kindle Edition
Chances are you haven’t been making the best investing decisions.
BECAUSE THAT’S HOW WALL STREET WANTS IT
Wall Street is very good at one thing: convincing you to act against your own interests. And there’s no one out there better equipped with the knowledge and moxie to explain how it all works than Josh Brown. A man The New York Times referred to as “the Merchant of Snark” and Barron’s called “pot-stirring and provocative,” Brown worked for 10 years in the industry, a time during which he learned some hard truths about how clients are routinely treated—and how their money is sent on a one-way trip to Wall Street’s coffers.
Backstage Wall Street reveals the inner workings of the world’s biggest money machine and explains how a relatively small confederation of brilliant, sometimes ill-intentioned people fuel it, operate it, and repair it when necessary—none of which is for the good of the average investor.
Offering a look that only a long-term insider could provide (and that only a “reformed” insider would want to provide), Brown describes:
THE PEOPLE—Why retail brokers always profit—even if you don’t
THE PRODUCTS—How funds, ETFs, and other products are invented as failsafe profit generators—for the inventors alone
THE PITCH—The marketing schemes designed for one thing and one thing only: to separate you from your money
It’s that bad . . . but there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. Brown gives you the knowledge you need to make the right decisions at the right time.
Backstage Wall Street is about seeing reality for what it is and adjusting your actions accordingly. It’s about learning who and what to steer clear of at all times. And it’s about setting the stage for a bright financial future—your own way.
Josh's anecdotes - like his description of the audience's reaction to Piper Jaffrey analyst Nicole Miller Regan's questions at a Jamba Juice's analyst day - are priceless.
(With apologies to Billy Joel) if you have "never met a backstreet guy..".. run, don't walk to read the Downtown Man's chronicles of deception from those wonderful folks on Wall Street that nearly bankrupted the world's financial system a few short years ago." -- Doug Kass "TheStreet.com"
"I have long wanted to see a book that would teach ordinary investors how to avoid being cheated by those that create/sell financial products. If this book isn't it, the one that surpasses it will be astounding. If Wall Street is a show, this book gives you a peek behind the curtain." -- David Merkel "SeekingAlpha"
From the Back Cover
Sure to be a revelation to even the savviest financial professional, Backstage Wall Street is a brutally honest look at the investment business from a veteran who's seen it all. "Reformed" Wall Street insider Joshua M. Brown offers clear and proven advice on how to navigate all the snares set by the lords of Wall Street.--This text refers to the hardcover edition.
- ASIN : B007F8EZ9M
- Publisher : McGraw Hill; 1st edition (March 27 2012)
- Language : English
- File size : 1771 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Up to 4 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 273 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #912,854 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
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Pretty much everything in this book I already knew. His satire and manner of information-sharing is typical Josh Brown excellence (and why I bought the book in the first place), but it's not ground breaking. He doesn't say anything I don't already know, but I still enjoy his style of writing. His way with words really makes topics easier to grasp - and humorous - without dumbing down the information.
I think this book is meant for the novice investor who does not know much about the financial industries. If you're an advisor, day trader, or pay attention to the markets regularly - there's not much in here you don't already know. It's never bad to hear Josh's take on things, but the "insight" seems more geared to those who aren't able to follow the markets day-in and day-out.
Maybe I misunderstood who the book was meant for, and being a Josh Brown fanboy I just bought it without taking the time to research first. Good for new investors or those not already familiar with markets. Rather redundant information if you're market-savvy.
Finally, Josh Brown has the distinct advantage of being in the same office with Barry Ritholtz, the author of "Bailout Nation" and one of the best minds in the business. I would think just being on the same block with Barry would improve one's perspective on what to do and what not to do when it comes to investing.
We're lucky that there are guys like Josh out there that don't get caught up in the BS of the system and keep perpetuating the myth. It's tough to get rich quick. If you read and believe Josh, and have a healthy dose of Wall Street skepticism, you will have a lot more money at the end of the line.
Here are some of the insights I picked up from reading it:
1. Selling one's expertise is much easier than actually developing an expertise, especially as it pertains to investing.
2. A good broker can close on anyone and he means anyone. Well almost. I was secretly hoping to adopt some of the successful selling techniques in my portfolio of bar pick up lines, but then Brown slapped me with the following: "It is nearly impossible to impulse-sell securities to women, as they tend to invest more for financial security than for bragging rights, big fish tales, or naked greed like wealthy men do." If only stocks were shoes.
3. By driving the costs out of trading, the online brokerages had inadvertently driven the investment banks back to the profit drawing board--as history has shown time and again, Wall Street getting creative is almost never a good thing.
4. Social media is just one more disruptive force that allows talented individuals to build their own brands and to gnaw away at the once-mighty oaks that have ruled the industry for so long.
5. Wall Street Sell-side research is a giant joke. In bull markets, you don't need them because everything goes up. In bear markets, their warning is usually way after the fact.
6. The game used to be played like this: "Do your initial public offering through our banking department, and our brokerage analysts will guarantee you a `strong buy' rating for your first six months of trading."
7. There is still an understanding that you don't downgrade the big clients of the firm. When analysts do downgrade stocks, in my experience, it tends to come only after a slew of weak earnings reports and in the context of a stock price that has already been falling for months. In fact, ask most experienced traders about which type of sell-side call gets them most excited and they'll almost unanimously answer that they love when a broker goes negative. The value investors will wholeheartedly agree.
8. The most effective method of selling anything in this world is through storytelling. And it is not just product that needs to be sold. Strategies have received their own stories as well. "Buy and hold" is one of the greatest stories ever told, this despite the fact that in the past century we've seen 25 cyclical bear markets and two bone-crushing secular bear markets.
9. There are a lot of "murderholes" on Wall Street: SPACs, Chinese ADRS, one-drug biotechs, private placements among others. I love the quote from Mike Tyson in the book: ""Everyone has a plan, 'til they get punched in the mouth."