Poke a Liar

If you have been wondering what happened to the financial markets of late, or even if you have been wondering what has caused them to fall so hard thrice since the late 1980’s, there is an excellent guide in Liar’s Poker: Rising through the Wreckage on Wall Street.

I spent eight years in banking (WaMu and Seafirst/BofA).  But you needn’t be an ex-banker to follow the succinct thread Michael Lewis draws in this tour of the financial debacle of the late 80’s (Salomon Brothers downward spiral, the bond market flop, and the eventual stock market crash).  He speaks with an insider’s knowledge but an outsider’s perspective.  His story-telling is keen and engaging.

In the end I found his account very insightful both in historical terms and as a guide to understanding our current fiasco.

I can highly recommend this book.

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