Download A First-Class Catastrophe: The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History Audiobook

A First-Class Catastrophe: The Road to Black Monday, the Worst Day in Wall Street History Audiobook, by Diana B. Henriques Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Diana B. Henriques Narrator: Gabra Zackman Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2017 ISBN: 9781538434291
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The definitive account of the crash of 1987, a cautionary tale of how the US financial system nearly collapsed—from the bestselling author of The Wizard of Lies

Monday, October 19, 1987, was by far the worst day in Wall Street history. The market fell 22.6 percent—almost twice as bad as the worst day of 1929—equal to a one-day loss of nearly 5,000 points today.

Black Monday was more than seven years in the making and threatened nearly every US financial institution. Drawing on superlative archival research and dozens of original interviews, Diana B. Henriques weaves a tale of missed opportunities, market delusions, and destructive actions that stretched from the “silver crisis” of 1980 to turf battles in Washington, a poisonous rivalry between the New York Stock Exchange and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and the almost-fatal success of two California professors whose idea for reducing market risk spun terribly out of control. As the story hurtles forward, the players struggle to forestall a looming market meltdown, and unexpected heroes step in to avert total disaster.

For thirty years, investors, regulators, and bankers have failed to heed the lessons of 1987, even as the same patterns have resurfaced, most spectacularly in the financial crisis of 2008. A First-Class Catastrophe offers a new way of looking not only at the past, but at our financial future as well.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “The author’s journalistic storytelling will bring a deeper understanding of Black Monday to all readers in the same way Andrew Ross Sorkin’s Too Big To Fail did for the 2008 crisis.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “Fast-paced, and thoroughly researched…A must-read for anyone who wants to understand why financial markets lurch from crisis to crisis and are still so frighteningly susceptible to crashes today.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A valuable and unfailingly interesting account of a crucial two-decade period in Wall Street history…Highly intelligent and perceptive analysis of an important transitional era in modern finance.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “A first-class cautionary tale that should be on every financial regulator’s and policy-maker’s desk—and many an investor, too.”

    Washington Post

  • “Solid economic reportage. Investors who remember the events of thirty years ago will blanch all over again, especially at the author’s suggestion that worse may be yet to come.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “A tale of unheeded warnings and misguided confidence that is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand how the fault lines in our modern markets came to be.”

    Bethany McLean, coauthor of The Smartest Guys in the Room

  • “Riveting…A rollicking good read.”

    Roger Lowenstein, author of When Genius Failed

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About the Author

Diana B. Henriques is the author of The White Sharks of Wall Street and Fidelity’s World. A senior financial writer for the New York Times, she is a George Polk Award winner and a Pulitzer Prize finalist. Her work has also received Harvard’s Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting and the Worth Bingham Prize, among other honors.

About the Narrator

Gabra Zackman is an actress, author, and narrator who has won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. She was educated at Northwestern University. A classically trained actress, she has appeared in theaters all over the country as well as on film and television.