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Monkey Business: Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle (English Edition)
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Monkey Business: Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle (English Edition) [Format Kindle]

John Rolfe
4.7 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (3 commentaires client)

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Descriptions du produit

From Publishers Weekly

As eager-beaver business school students, Rolfe and Troob garnered job offers as junior associates at the elite Wall Street investment bank Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, lured by dreams of wealth, glamour and power. Readers whose fascination with Wall Street shenanigans has been fueled by Michael Lewis's Liar's Poker will find this thorough rundown of an investment bank associate's daily routine sobering. By the time Rolfe and Troob were able to discern the key fact that the "investment banking community has long been an oligopoly, with only a handful of real players with the size and scale to drive through the big deals," they were already grappling with the gritty reality of performing grunt labor in an environment ruled by despotic senior partners who called innumerable meetings to set unrealistic deadlines and make superhuman demands on anybody within screaming distance. The authors' resulting disappointment and disaffection leaps off every page. Unfortunately, they take out their frustrations with indiscriminate potshots at such easy targets as word processors ("Christopher Street fairies"), copy center personnel ("a platoon of patriotic Puerto Ricans" they offhandedly refer to as "militants") and female research analysts (whom they describe as "under-sexed, eager-to-please"). Long before the hapless authors have stooped to expressing their fury at the bank by such puerile antics as urinating into a beer bottle while seated at a banquet table at the Christmas party, readers will have had enough. (Apr.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Industry Standard

The Net Economy is infatuated with boy wonders. Fawning magazine stories report the musings of obscure research analysts like PaineWebber's Walter Piecyk, 28, who managed to boost Qualcomm's market cap by $25 billion in one day last December. And Vanity Fair chronicles the harrowing road shows of baby-faced CEOs.

But there's a dark side to the story: the legions of hungry, young investment bankers who make it all happen behind the scenes. Wall Street's young turks attach themselves to anything and everything that generates fees. In the late 1980s it was junk bonds and mortgage-backed securities. In the greedy 1990s and onward it's Internet stocks.

Now thanks to two recent defectors from Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette, we can peek behind the curtains of these money-making machines. Their book, Monkey Business, is the funniest read since Michael Lewis' Liar's Poker, and it should give pause to anyone who comes in close contact with this rare species.

Two young MBA hopefuls, John Rolfe and Peter Troob, got sucked into Wall Street right out of Wharton and Harvard, respectively, soaked up the local color and left to tell all a short while later. The scenes are straight out of movies like Wall Street or The Boiler Room: The young associates nurse their supersize egos while their bosses try to crush them; they curse profusely and live large on four hours of sleep a night; they subsidize the strip clubs of Manhattan before Mayor Giuliani took the perk away from Wall Street.

But what do they really do for $200,000 a year? "It took our mothers six months to realize that we weren't stockbrokers, working the phones to sell crappy public offerings to unsuspecting investors," they write. "It took us another six months after that to realize that we were, in fact, selling crappy public offerings to investors." The only difference was that these two associates were shoveling the smelly deals to institutional investors, who then passed the bucket on.

Dave Barry couldn't have written a more schizophrenic tale. In a freewheeling narrative that alternates between the two men, Monkey Business lays out in exquisite detail how pitch books are developed (collaborative yet futile chaos dictated by hierarchy); how an investment bank arrives at a company's valuation (mostly guesswork driven by the desire to prove a company's march toward world domination); how to read a prospectus that an army of lawyers, bankers, accountants and managers have fought over in mind-numbing "drafting sessions" (skip everything except the financial statements). Then there's the story of a fruitless "due-diligence" trip for the junk-bond offering of an unnamed multinational wireless company, a wild goose chase over 12,000 miles through seven countries that yields little substance.

A year into their banking careers, both authors decide to chuck it all and get a life, leaving behind what they call a jungle full of commandeering baboons, dung beetles and busy monkeys. These days they work for a hedge fund, go home at 8 p.m. and toy with a Web site ( that pokes fun at anything Wall Street, from the relaxed dress code at Goldman Sachs to the demise of the Tiger Management hedge fund. The duo isn't working on a pitch book to take themselves public - yet.

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Commentaires en ligne 

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Commentaires client les plus utiles
4 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Great book!!! 1 décembre 2000
Par Un client
Really hillarious! Big fun and ... an absolute truth on what the start of career in investment bank is. Strongly recommended to all those who think the will reach the top of the world seating in the "non-stop" train (in the first class of course) straight out of the business school.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Très bien! 21 novembre 2012
Par yuyu
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Excellent service from the seller, fast delivery and well-packaged. The book is a very interesting read! Recommend to those who love this kind of "insider stories" in financial world!
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2 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Fantastic! 24 octobre 2004
I read this book exactly by the time I was about to graduate from the HEC Paris Business School. Honestly I felt very identified and sometimes shocked with all the miths regarding I-Banking. I don't know if I-Banking practices have changed in the last years but I honestly recommend this book for those naive students who think that there is a world full of money, glamour, and pleasures within the IB business.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 4.2 étoiles sur 5  285 commentaires
94 internautes sur 108 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Male Locker Room Humor about Investment Banking 20 septembre 2000
Par Donald Mitchell - Publié sur
Before going into my review, let me start with a caution. This book is the grossest, most vulgar business book I have ever read . . . by a very wide margin. This book would have been banned in Boston 50 years ago. If that sort of thing offends you, this book is a minus ten stars. Many women will feel this book is anti-female. On the other hand, if you happen to like your humor male, bold and brassy, this book will be one of the funniest you will ever read.
As someone who often works with investment bankers, the descriptions about how business is sold and delivered should be tempered a bit. This book describes pretty much every investment banker as shoddy, shallow, and manipulative. That has not been my typical experience. There are terrifically smart, talented, ethical and humane investment bankers. For example, one of my favorites never used a pitch book during his first meeting with a client. Pitch book preparation is one of the banes of the young investment banker's existence. But like all professions, investment bankers vary a lot. There are certainly some less capable ones, and I have seen their work too. I would describe it much like the authors do.
In terms of the working conditions, they are mostly a reflection of weak management in the industry. Investment banks reward doing deals, not being good managers of the deals. A fellow I know became CEO of a major investment bank, and made much less money after that than when he was just a deal-maker. He found little interest on the part of his colleagues in improving management, so it was pretty frustrating. It just doesn't pay to work on making life better for the investment bankers in training, compared to producing more business.
The book's main point is that many young people enter investment banking without knowing what it is like, and are overly impressed with the financial prospects. If your values really favor having time for yourself, your family, and developing your other interests, this is probably the wrong career for you. There are plenty of other ways to make lots of money. The richest people I know are entrepreneurs, not investment bankers.
The book's other main point is that you should take a look at close yourself before you compromise too many of your values. The authors should have never joined an investment bank. Having done so, they should have left much sooner.
CEOs and CFOs should read this book also, to know what to check out carefully in the work that investment bankers do. Most companies now develop their own ideas, and just hire the investment bankers for implementation. In that role, fewer problems will occur of the sort described here. Perhaps the most dangerous role is having an investment banker help you select and pursue an acquisition. Many expensive mistakes follow under those circumstances. Caveat emptor!
You will probably find the monkey drawings in the book add to the humor. The text frequently refers to monkey-see, monkey-do type examples, and the whole story is seen more usefully as a bunch of monkeys playing in a gilded cage. That takes some of the sting out of the gratuitous grossness.
If you liked the put-downs of investment bankers in Liar's Poker, this book will be irresistible to you.
After you have had a good laugh, take a look at your current job and see how well it fits your values and life goals. Chances are that it doesn't. Be prepared to figure that out, and move onward and upward out of whatever gilded (or not-so-gilded) cage you are in today into the freedom of self-actualization.
23 internautes sur 24 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Non-bankers might never understand 17 juin 2001
Par Un client - Publié sur
As an ex banker, I can say that Rolfe and Troob are not exaggerating a damned thing. This is banking, unplugged.
A lot of people have decided to criticize the two for whining and not "sucking it up" as any hard-working professional needs to in his first years. Anybody who has said this has no idea what he's talking about. I guarantee you that there is no twentysomethings job in the business world that is even close to the difficulty of two years in banking. Unless you have worked 70-hour nonstop stretches under extreme pressure (think about it: working more in one sleepless stretch than most people do in a week), you cannot possibly understand what it means.
I've made my escape, like these two clowns and I'm glad of it, b/c I too realize that I was just a damned trained ape. Dress an ape up in a nice suit and put him in a fast car, he's still an ape. Most associates realize at some point that they'll never make MD. It's the bait that's dangled in front of you, but it is just like the top law firms. Up and out. If you don't have the rainmaking ability, you're outta there and no one will be missing you.
However, there were some troubling parts of this book from a non-banking view. If it bothers you, note that these guys are mildly racist and classist. The comments about homosexuals, Latinos, Asians, and the poor are somewhere on the maturity level of a sixteen-year-old snot punk at Andover, but then again, you can take this as another dose of Wall Street Reality; don't expect bigtime enlightenment from these wallstreet knuckledraggers.
All in all, it's worth a read.
27 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A must read for new MBA's 27 juin 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur
As a MBA student at a top B-School, the lure of the investment banking siren rings loud every day. I hear how much my friends are getting offered in banking and think, "What can be so bad?" Thanks to this book, I now realize why the big bucks are there!
If you are considering going into banking, this book is an absolute "must read". The book is entertaining, easy to read, yet full of content. You feel like you are sitting at the desks with them, getting screamed at. I found myself actually feeling stressed over the routine I saw these guys doing.
This book is great for anyone in B-school, banking, or business in general. However, if you are not a capitalist, you should probably save your money.
The language is fairly rough, but I felt it was important because it gave you a good feel for the atmosphere. The limited audience appeal dropped the overall rating a little, so I gave the book 4 stars. If you are interested in this subject, it is a full 5.
I must admit, the money sounds great, and I may in fact fall in the snare, but I go in with my eyes wide open! Thanks guys!
11 internautes sur 11 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Real Investment Banker says "Accurate and Entertaining" 17 décembre 2001
Par "joebloggs12" - Publié sur
Anyone who thinks this book is untrue or is in any way an exaggeration obviously has not gone through the experience of being a junior investment banker. I have spent the past two years as an analyst (pre-MBA) at an investment bank and can honestly say that this book is an accurate representation of what goes on in investment banking. When the book came out, many junior bankers (analysts and associates) immediately picked up copies of the book and thoroughly enjoyed it as it summed up what makes banking such an awful work environment in a fast reading format. The book gave comfort to us bankers as it demonstrated that the type of things that happens at DLJ happens at other banks as well. Investment banking is truly a dysfunctional place to be with senior bankers having absolutely no concern for what happens to the junior bankers. I would highly recommend this book as it is very entertaining and very accurate and I would also recommend anyone thinking of working at an investment bank to do something else, as the money is really not worth all of the (...) you have to deal with on a daily basis.
10 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Money, Power, Glitz, and Glamour!! 24 août 2002
Par Derek G - Publié sur
First, a confession. Another reviewer posted a scathing review of this book and said it was so bad he would send it for free to anyone who wanted it. I took him up on his offer and promised to write a similar review if I felt the same way. The problem is... I really liked this book!
I wanted to read Monkey Business as I used to consider investment banking as a career and wondered if the tremendous investment of time and money was worth it. The answer, according to authors Rolfe and Troob, is a resounding "NO." You will probably make a lot of money once you do get in. But ultimately it's not worth it, not by a long shot.
Written during the height of dot-com mania, the authors pull no punches in proceeding to lambaste almost every aspect of the house of money formerly known as Donaldson, Lufkin, and Jenrette, as well as the entire investment banking industry. It's an episode of "Behind the Music - Wall Street", that strips away the Hollywood notion of the wealthy, jet-setting investment banker and exposes the underbelly of tedious boredom, bureaucracy, posturing, and incompetence that make up this awful work environment. The book is so strong in its criticisms that I'm surprised Rolfe and Troob weren't sued for libel. Given all the Wall Street scandals making the headlines lately, they'd probably get their money back.
Colorful language is an understatement. By the end of the book, the guys are doing calculations to determine the "expected value" of attempting to bed a banking assistant at the holiday party versus the "present value" of a sure thing at the local strip club. The chauvanism, vulgarity, racism and anecdotes comparing co-workers and bosses to everything from dung beetles to excrement might lead you to believe they're exaggerating just to trash their former employer. However, the numerous reviews on this site exclaiming, "Yes! This IS life at (-insert investment bank here-)" could indicate they may not be far from the truth.
Ironically, my latest read, Frank Partnoy's F.I.A.S.C.O., describes the investment banking division (IBD) as follows: "In IBD, young associates spent twenty-four hour days preparing 'books,' the bound presentations senior bankers flipped through during meetings with corporate executives. You took a job there at your peril. After several years preparing these flip books, you would either be fired or promoted, assuming you were still alive. After several more years you would be allowed to carry the books to meetings, and at some point you might even be permitted to speak... I wanted to steer clear of IBD."
Ultimately, I believe the authors succeeded in writing a book that provides an honest account of the business. Those in the industry are sure to get a good laugh out of it and those considering this career should definitely read this book first.
Hope the review helped.
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