Panic!: The Story of Modern Financial Insanity Audiobook | Michael Lewis | Audible.com
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Panic!: The Story of Modern Financial Insanity | [Michael Lewis]

Panic!: The Story of Modern Financial Insanity

A masterful account of today's money culture, showing how the underpricing of risk leads to catastrophe. With his trademark humor and brilliant anecdotes, Michael Lewis paints the mood and market factors leading up to each event, weaves contemporary accounts to show what people thought was happening at the time, and then, with the luxury of hindsight, analyzes what actually happened and what we should have learned from experience.
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Publisher's Summary

A masterful account of today's money culture, showing how the underpricing of risk leads to catastrophe. When it comes to markets, the first deadly sin is greed. Michael Lewis is our jungle guide through five of the most violent and costly upheavals in recent financial history: the crash of '87, the Russian default (and the subsequent collapse of Long-Term Capital Management), the Asian currency crisis of 1999, the Internet bubble, and the current sub-prime mortgage disaster.

With his trademark humor and brilliant anecdotes, Lewis paints the mood and market factors leading up to each event, weaves contemporary accounts to show what people thought was happening at the time, and then, with the luxury of hindsight, analyzes what actually happened and what we should have learned from experience.

As he proved in Liar's Poker, The New New Thing, and Moneyball, Lewis is without peer in his understanding of market forces and human foibles. He is also, arguably, the funniest serious writer in America.

©2008 Michael Lewis; (P)2008 Simon & Schuster Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (92 )
5 star
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3.6 (29 )
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3.8 (25 )
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  •  
    Cash Plano, TX, United States 01-03-09
    Cash Plano, TX, United States 01-03-09 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good - But you need to know what you are getting."

    What the description doesn't tell you is this is a series of articles written over the past 20 years - many of them not by Lewis. If this will annoy you, steer clear.

    With that said, there are some really good articles here. As for many of them being 'old', the value they provide is perspective. It will be years before we have perspective on the 2008 melt down. It's a bit easier to have perspective of the financial crisis of '87, '97, and 2000. With these, we can start having some with the 2008 situation.

    Lewis, selects articles written in the boom preceding the bust and in the midst of the crisis. His narrative adds his own analysis and perspective around these articles.

    The primary themes and lessons of these events are: 1) The markets are very complicated and very few people understand them - even after the fact. 2) Often these busts are caused by groups attempting to exploit a condition supported by market technicalities. 3) People often believe the current event is "the end of the world" or the "the end of Capitalism". 4) The environment of the the Global Economy seems to be increasing the frequency and strength of these boom bust cycles. 5) As painful as they are, they don't foretell the end of the world and we'll be better off when we recognize this reality not Panic!

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sheldon Philadelphia, PA, United States 01-01-09
    Sheldon Philadelphia, PA, United States 01-01-09 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Rehash"

    I love Michael Lewis but this is a poor effort. It's just a compendium of articles from Lewis and others over the last 20 years. Interesting maybe, but there's nothing new and it feels as if he is just taking advantage of the current financial mess rather than contributing something original.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Moore Bay Area, CA USA 01-27-09
    Michael Moore Bay Area, CA USA 01-27-09 Member Since 2005

    mcubed33

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Insightful but Don't Miss His Sequel"

    Michael Lewis is at his best writing about the business and personalities he has known first hand from his Wall Street experience. This book paints an in-depth and disturbing picture of the Wall Street "doomsday machines," as Lewis aptly calls them. What we see in the "sub-prime" collapse are our major investment banks--with a few notable exceptions--so driven by competitive and ego-centered pressures for ever-larger profits and bonuses that prudent and responsible management oversight was abandoned. The shame in this case is that the consequences of their irresponsibility fell not only on the banks' shareholders but on the country as a whole, because the painful day of reckoning has wreaked havoc throughout the credit markets. It is abundantly clear from this account that business as usual the old Wall Street way can no longer be tolerated by the country, and reform is inevitable. Let us hope the reform is sensible and responsible.

    I gave the book only three stars, because the best chapters (by Lewis himself) are already available on the internet. Further, his best piece on the subprime crisis was not included in the book. You can find it, however, on the Conde Nast, Portfolio.com website--an article in the December 2008 edition, entitled, appropriately, "The End."

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Henry United States 09-26-12
    Henry United States 09-26-12 Member Since 2012
    ratings
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    "Abridged books"
    What disappointed you about Panic!?

    I always feel like I'm missing something when I read an abridged book. Nobody's fault but mine, I do like the author tho.


    Has Panic! turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Blair Hardman and Jesse Boggs ?

    Just one narrator please!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dan Irmo, SC, United States 11-25-11
    Dan Irmo, SC, United States 11-25-11 Member Since 2000
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Recycled content"

    Nothing significant to add to other reviewers - Audible just requires me to review in order to add my rating. This is an interesting compilation of sometimes antiquated articles. Nothing new. I love Lewis' work, but cannot recommend this specific compilation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Matthew Toronto, Canada 03-28-09
    Matthew Toronto, Canada 03-28-09 Member Since 2006
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    "Disappointing"

    I normally love Michael Lewis, but this book left me short. The problem here is that this wasn't really a Lewis book it is more like a well done journalism thesis or academic work. The comparison of the pieces written at the different times is interesting in a big picture way but reading the articles themselves get a bit repetitive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andrew boca raton, FL, USA 02-14-09
    Andrew boca raton, FL, USA 02-14-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Why Bother"

    Essentially a series of reprints of various articles no new material huge deissapointment after reading Liars Poker

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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