Extended Audio Sample

Download The Physics of Wall Street: A Brief History of Predicting the Unpredictable Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Physics of Wall Street: A Brief History of Predicting the Unpredictable, by James Owen Weatherall Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: James Owen Weatherall Narrator: Kaleo Griffith Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
Regular Price: $19.99 Download
— or —
FlexPass™ Price: $12.95$5.95$5.95 for new members!
Download learn more )

After the economic meltdown of 2008, Warren Buffett famously warned, “beware of geeks bearing formulas.” But as James Weatherall demonstrates, not all geeks are created equal. While many of the mathematicians and software engineers on Wall Street failed when their abstractions turned ugly in practice, a special breed of physicists has a much deeper history of revolutionizing finance. Taking us from fin-de-siècle Paris to Rat Pack–era Las Vegas, from wartime government labs to hippie communes on the Pacific coast, Weatherall shows how physicists successfully brought their science to bear on some of the thorniest problems in economics, from options pricing to bubbles.

The crisis was partly a failure of mathematical modeling. But even more, it was a failure of some very sophisticated financial institutions to think like physicists. Models—whether in science or finance—have limitations; they break down under certain conditions. And in 2008, sophisticated models fell into the hands of people who didn’t understand their purpose, and didn’t care. It was a catastrophic misuse of science.

The solution, however, is not to give up on models; it’s to make them better. Weatherall reveals the people and ideas on the cusp of a new era in finance. We see a geophysicist use a model designed for earthquakes to predict a massive stock market crash. We discover a physicist-run hedge fund that earned 2,478.6 percent over the course of the 1990s. And we see how an obscure idea from quantum theory might soon be used to create a far more accurate Consumer Price Index.

Both persuasive and accessible, The Physics of Wall Street is riveting history that will change how we think about our economic future.

Download and start listening now!

BK_TANT_002957

Quotes & Awards

  • “Anyone interested in how markets work will appreciate this serious hypothesis.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Fascinating history…Happily, the author has a gift for making complex concepts clear to lay readers.”

    Booklist

  • “A lively account of physicists in finance…An enjoyable debut appropriate for both specialists and general readers.”

    Kirkus Reviews

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

James Owen Weatherall is a physicist, philosopher, and mathematician, currently working as assistant professor of logic and philosophy of science at the University of California, Irvine, where he is also a member of the Institute for Mathematical Behavioral Science. He lives in Irvine, CA with his wife and two daughters.