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The Buy Side: A Wall Street Trader's Tale of Spectacular Excess | [Turney Duff]

The Buy Side: A Wall Street Trader's Tale of Spectacular Excess

A remarkable writing debut, filled with indelible moments, The Buy Side shows as no book ever has the rewards – and dizzying temptations – of making a living on the Street.
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Publisher's Summary

The Buy Side, by former Galleon Group trader Turney Duff, portrays an after-hours Wall Street culture where drugs and sex are rampant and billions in trading commissions flow to those who dangle the most enticements.

A remarkable writing debut, filled with indelible moments, The Buy Side shows as no book ever has the rewards – and dizzying temptations – of making a living on the Street.

Growing up in the 1980’s Turney Duff was your average kid from Kennebunk, Maine, eager to expand his horizons. After trying – and failing – to land a job as a journalist, he secured a trainee position at Morgan Stanley and got his first feel for the pecking order that exists in the trading pits. Those on the “buy side,” the traders who make large bets on whether a stock will rise or fall, are the “alphas” and those on the “sell side,” the brokers who handle their business, are eager to please.

How eager to please was brought home stunningly to Turney in 1999 when he arrived at the Galleon Group, a colossal hedge-fund management firm run by secretive founder Raj Rajaratnam. Finally in a position to trade on his own, Turney was encouraged to socialize with the sell side and siphon from his new broker friends as much information as possible. Soon he was not just vacuuming up valuable tips but also being lured into a variety of hedonistic pursuits. Naive enough to believe he could keep up the lifestyle without paying a price, he managed to keep an eye on his buy-and-sell charts and, meanwhile, pondered the strange goings on at Galleon, where tens of millions were being made each week in sometimes mysterious ways.

At his next positions, at Argus Partners and J.L. Berkowitz, Turney climbed to even higher heights – and, as it turned out, plummeted to even lower depths - as, by day, he solidified his reputation one of the Street’s most powerful healthcare traders, and by night, he blazed a path through the city’s nightclubs, showing off his social genius and voraciously inhaling any drug that would fill the void he felt inside.

A mesmerizingly immersive journey through Wall Street’s first millennial decade, and a poignant self-portrait by a young man who surely would have destroyed himself were it not for his decision to walk away from a seven-figure annual income, The Buy Side is one of the best coming-of-age-on-the-Street books ever written.

©2013 Turney Duff (P)2013 Random House

What Members Say

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4.3 (309 )
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  •  
    Courtney Falls church, VA, United States 06-27-13
    Courtney Falls church, VA, United States 06-27-13 Member Since 2014

    As an only child, books were my world. I love to read and audiobooks are essential in my world today. I must admit I am somewhat dependent (addicted?) to audible audiobooks. Too easy. Too good!

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    "Fascinating, honest tale of life on the "Street""

    I took a risk on buying this book as I am completely illiterate in all things Wall Street. It paid off quite nicely because the author takes us through his journey on Wall Street from his own beginning as an painfully clueless intern. He explains the function of a Wall Street trader in a way that almost anyone can understand and I found it fascinating. He takes the reader with him as he moves up the ladder, becoming one of the biggest names on the Buy Side. While doing this, Duff seamlessly delves into the accompanying lifestyle of the trader-where more money can be made in one day than many people make in a decade. The excess is almost inevitable but it's the drugs that are Duff's final undoing. And eventually, his redoing. Ultimately, he sees the emptiness in all of it but not until he goes through his own version of hell. The beauty of this book is that you need not be a finance major to enjoy it, because the book is not about finance, or stocks, or trading at all. It's about our ever-increasing need to find something outside of ourselves to make us happy, and never finding it.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Philipp 03-16-15
    Philipp 03-16-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Can't write to save his life"

    Story of an ego maniac written in the perspective of a ego maniac. I would not recommend this book. Gives a false picture of Wall Street.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kate Santa Barbara, CA, United States 08-15-14
    Kate Santa Barbara, CA, United States 08-15-14 Member Since 2015
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    "Good book, badly read"
    What made the experience of listening to The Buy Side the most enjoyable?

    It was a fascinating story, told from the first person perspective.


    What other book might you compare The Buy Side to and why?

    A Colossal Failure of Common Sense: The Inside Story of the Collapse of Lehman Brothers--another insider story, but more about the industry than the individual


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Turney Duff?

    Almost anyone! I understand why someone who writes a book about his own life would like to read it, but his narration really detracted from the book. I almost stopped listening, although he did a bit better by the end. He was flat and boring.

    Steven Hoye or Sean Runnette would have been great.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Not really, I just felt bad for those around him who were hurt by his actions.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    richard WEST HARTFORD, CT, United States 06-30-13
    richard WEST HARTFORD, CT, United States 06-30-13 Member Since 2012
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    "Enthralling story"
    Would you listen to The Buy Side again? Why?

    I would listen to this book again.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Duff paints a picture for the listener, I truly believe him even when he isn't quite sure what happened.


    Which character – as performed by Turney Duff – was your favorite?

    Raj.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    A blow by blow account of the street's spectacular highs, and lows.


    Any additional comments?

    Don't quit during the opening preface. I had a strong urge to stop listening right off the bat however, after Duff 'warmed up' The Buy Side seemed to flow more naturally.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steve Maddox 08-03-15
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    "Wonderful book"
    Would you listen to The Buy Side again? Why?

    Definitely - it's just a great story and very well written.


    What other book might you compare The Buy Side to and why?

    Straight to Hell.


    Which character – as performed by Turney Duff – was your favorite?

    Turney Duff and his buddy Turbo.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    The author relapsing and almost ending up homeless was tough. I was rooting for him to straighten up his life and his relapse surprised me.


    Any additional comments?

    Funny, moving, and informative book. Very well written and author-performed books are always the best. This is no exception - loved every minute.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan Sliva 07-01-15
    Ryan Sliva 07-01-15 Member Since 2015
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    "A little darker than expected"

    It was an interesting take on the Wall Street experience. A little darker than I imagined but entertaining nonetheless. I'd give it a read if you're looking for some Wall Street entertainment. Oh and cocaine is a hell of a drug haha.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marco Torre 05-04-15
    Marco Torre 05-04-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Weekend listen"

    Great story! I probably got through it in one weekend. Duff is an excellent story teller. I could not stop listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed 05-01-15
    Ed 05-01-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Great book."

    Awesome. Great writing. Turney did a fantastic job. Insiders account of the Wall Street inner workings. Very educational, an eye opener.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jesse 04-21-15
    Jesse 04-21-15 Member Since 2014
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    "Worth it"

    It's more than just a Wall Street story, it shows how bad choices can affect your life and those around you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Eric Bowser 02-27-15
    Eric Bowser 02-27-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Really enjoyed the book"

    A well written book about many different life experiences from a Wall Street trader. Kept me drawn in the entire time. Cocaine is one hell of a drug

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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