Summary of Wall Street

A History: From Its Beginnings to the Fall of Enron

Oxford UP,
First Edition: 1997 more...

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Wall Street book summary
The U.S. stock market began as a quaint outdoor commodities exchange. Only one thing hasn`t changed: the corruption.


7 Overall

6 Innovation

7 Style


This comprehensive book provides a wealth of detail about the origins and history of the financial institutions, private and public, that underpin Wall Street and the economy of the United States - and therefore, to an extent, much of the rest of the world. Author Charles R. Geisst presents a detailed discussion of the contest between the forces of libertarianism and regulation. Detail is both the strength and the weakness of this book. Often, the author has trouble organizing it all, and the book would have benefited from a stricter editor to help distill the "story" in this history. Despite such problems, however, the factual basis is rich and intriguing. getAbstract believes that readers interested in U.S. financial history, especially those in the investment and financial services industries, will want to read this book.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How the New York Stock Exchange started
  • How U.S. economic cycles have led to parallel market phases of regulation and deregulation
  • Why Wall Street is sometimes its own worst enemy


Founding the New York Stock and Exchange Board
In their early days, the American colonies had no single, uniform currency. Each coined its own money. In addition, British, French and Spanish currencies were all common, and gold or silver was the medium of exchange in high-risk transactions...
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About the Author

Charles R. Geisst is a professor of finance in the school of business at Manhattan College. He is the author of Wheels of Fortune and Deals of the Century.

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