Extended Audio Sample

Download Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Lords of Finance: The Bankers Who Broke the World Audiobook, by Liaquat Ahamed Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,883 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Liaquat Ahamed Narrator: Stephen Hoye Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2009 ISBN: 9781400181797
Regular Price: $23.99 Add to Cart
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $12.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Add to Cart learn more )

It is commonly believed that the Great Depression that began in 1929 resulted from a confluence of events beyond any one person's or government's control. In fact, as Liaquat Ahamed reveals, it was the decisions made by a small number of central bankers that were the primary cause of the economic meltdown, the effects of which set the stage for World War II and reverberated for decades. In Lords of Finance, we meet the neurotic and enigmatic Montagu Norman of the Bank of England, the xenophobic and suspicious Émile Moreau of the Banque de France, the arrogant yet brilliant Hjalmar Schacht of the Reichsbank, and Benjamin Strong of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, whose façade of energy and drive masked a deeply wounded and overburdened man. After the First World War, these central bankers attempted to reconstruct the world of international finance. Despite their differences, they were united by a common fear-that the greatest threat to capitalism was inflation-and by a common vision that the solution was to turn back the clock and return the world to the gold standard. For a brief period in the mid-1920s, they appeared to have succeeded. The world's currencies were stabilized, and capital began flowing freely across the globe. But beneath the veneer of boomtown prosperity, cracks started to appear in the financial system. The gold standard that all had believed would provide an umbrella of stability proved to be a straitjacket, and the world economy began that terrible downward spiral known as the Great Depression. As yet another period of economic turmoil makes headlines today, the Great Depression and the year 1929 remain the benchmark for true financial mayhem. Offering a new understanding of the global nature of financial crises, Lords of Finance is a potent reminder of the enormous impact that the decisions of central bankers can have, of their fallibility, and of the terrible human consequences that can result when they are wrong. Download and start listening now!

be6j

Quotes & Awards

  • Ahamed...easily connects the dots between the economic crises that rocked the world during the years his book covers and the fiscal emergencies that beset us today. The New York Times
  • Winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Pauli | 2/20/2014

    " This puts the current econ crisis in perspective. Some of the quotes, though decades old, you wouldn't know from yesterday. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lincoln | 2/14/2014

    " Well written, great storytelling of a very very relevant topic today. Great read with terrific portraits of the central bankers involved. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vicky Colorado | 2/10/2014

    " Definitely recommend, especially considering the recent banking meltdowns and current banking regulations. One caveat for me: while fascinating and well researched (such detail!), something about the author's writing style left me wanting. He has a way of creating a build up that completely engrosses you, but then when he gets to the climax of the particular point he seems to gloss over it and move to the next point. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Daniel Oon | 2/5/2014

    " The history even 10/20 yo industry veterans have no idea of. Amazing read. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Shagun Gupta | 2/3/2014

    " the title is catchy but it reads more like a history book than a perspective into the actions of the 4 individuals "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Thomas | 1/28/2014

    " So this book definetly lands square in the realm of starts slow, finishes strong. International Finance see, is really about as dull as it gets right up untill it nearly destroys modern civilization. Even if the begining feels a bit like Macro Econ homework the middle and end are just outrageously entertaining. I'm not even gonna qualify that with, ...as far as books about money go, it's just a great read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Melissa Hefferlin | 1/16/2014

    " I have listened to this book several times while I do manual labor. I enjoyed the personal approach to the characters in world finance. I learned much about the finances of the two World Wars. I thought the writing good. The jumping about in time was disconcerting, but otherwise a good book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Stuart Coleman | 1/16/2014

    " Awesome, enthralling, incredibly interesting. Details the lives of a few important figures between the two wars, as well as the financial history of that time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 KO | 1/8/2014

    " Wonderfull - clearest explanation of how the world financial structure evolved in the early 20th century and shaped today's world. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bassam Al-Bassam | 12/12/2013

    " It took around two months to finish this difficult book because I tried to understand the basic economic concepts. At the end it was worth every minute and it makes you think that one is an expert. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Craig Brantley | 12/9/2013

    " What a fascinating read during this time of economic volatility. Let's hope today's financial leaders have the skills that some of their predecessors lacked. Ahamed keeps this book interesting when it could have bogged down in technical economic lingo. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barry | 10/17/2013

    " The Great Depression explained, given personal, social and political context, and made fascinating. 4.5 stars. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bimbo | 5/27/2013

    " First I gave 4* for substance and style. On second thought I raised it to 5* because it is so entertaining in painting a vivid picture of a very dark age. Would I have read this book circa 2005, then I'd probably hesitate between a three and a four star rating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rachel Sharf | 1/19/2013

    " Excellent, even for people who do not enjoy or know anything about finance. The blend of history and finance is fascinating. It is an extremely well written book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Brenda | 3/19/2012

    " Again, Ken read this book, I didn't. He liked it and came to understand how a few wealthy men really did rule the world. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Erin | 1/16/2012

    " A lot of the economics were over my head, but that didn't keep me from enjoying the history & biography tidbits. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Avin | 11/11/2011

    " So good could be made into a movie. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sara | 7/30/2011

    " Required reading. Illuminating, insightful and timely. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Converse | 6/16/2011

    " Who would think that 1920s central bankers - Britain's Montaque Norman, Benjamin Strong at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, the German Hjalmar Schacht and the Frenchman Emile Moreau- would be so interesting and relevant? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 William | 4/11/2011

    " What a background for understanding how world banks work together for someone's purpose. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Bob | 4/10/2011

    " Winner of the 2010 Pulitzer Prize for History, this book examines the roles of the four central bankers of the USA, England, France, and Germany leading up to and through the Great Depression. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michael | 3/16/2011

    " Great on how the gold standard failed and how modern finance came to be. Especially loved the sections on devaluation vs deflation. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Doug | 2/22/2011

    " A 500+ page book that makes central banking an engrossing topic. Well done. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Rob | 2/15/2011

    " one of the best books i've read in a long time. a great account of the world's main central bankers from WWI up to WWII. A great job of weaving stories of personal histories of the main players with the policy decisions they made. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Andrew | 2/12/2011

    " Awesome read about the monetary policies following WWI. It's written from the perspectives of the central banks - France, Germany, England,and the United States. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott | 2/9/2011

    " Depressing to think that our experts have so little control or concern over what they "rule." "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ferdyansyah | 1/24/2011

    " cuma butuh 4 orang buat ngacak2 dunia...ediann!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Abrillon | 1/18/2011

    "
    For a dry subject the author makes a real page turner out of it. Great read very à propos. We all know how it finishes but he keeps us interested in getting there. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lincoln | 1/17/2011

    " Well written, great storytelling of a very very relevant topic today. Great read with terrific portraits of the central bankers involved. "

Write a Review
What is FlexPass?
  • Your first audiobook is just $5.95
  • Over 90% are at or below $12.95
  • "LOVE IT" guarantee
  • No time limits or expirations
About the Author
Author Liaquat Ahamed

Liaquat Ahamed has been a professional investment manager for more than twenty-five years. He has worked at the World Bank in Washington, DC, and the New York–based partnership of Fischer Francis Trees and Watts, where he served as chief executive. He is currently an advisor to several hedge fund groups, including the Rock Creek Group and the Rohatyn Group; a director of the Aspen Insurance Company; and a member of the board of trustees of the Brookings Institution. Ahamed has degrees in economics from Harvard and Cambridge universities.

About the Narrator

Stephen Hoye has worked as a professional actor in London and Los Angeles for more than thirty years. Trained at Boston University and the Guildhall in London, he has acted in television series and six feature films and has appeared in London’s West End. His audiobook narration has won him fifteen AudioFile Earphones Awards.