Regular price: $34.99
Buy Now with 1 Credit
Buy Now for $34.99
“I’d be a bum on the street with a tin cup if the markets were efficient.”
― Jake Halpern, Bad Paper: Chasing Debt from Wall Street to the Underworld
New New Journalism about the financial/debt markets is "So HOT right now".
I went into this book thinking it was going to be a bad copy of a Michael Lewis book. Anyway, a friend of mine recommended this highly. She also has a great book out about debt and the poor (How the Other Half Banks: Exclusion, Exploitation, and the Threat to Democracy), so I overcame my reluctance and read 'Bad Paper'. IT stunned me. A lot of the basics I understood before, but Halpern was able to add detail and texture to the industry and the players. It reads like Dante's Inferno. First Circle (Banks?), Second Circle (Hedge Funds/Debt Buyers?), Third Circle (Fresh Debt Brokers?), Fourth Circle (Large, more reputable Debt Collectors?), Fifth Circle (Mom & Pop Debt Collectors?), 6th Circle (Older/Crap/Bad Paper Brokers?), 7th Circle (White Dope Peddlers?), 8th Circle (Thieves?), Lawyers (9th Circle). I guess it holds up.
Anyway, the book was tighter than I imagined it was going to be. It was measured, well-documented, and its methodology was documented and obvious. Jake Halpern wasn't venturing too far out with his recommendation or his observations. He played a very close narrative game, and it worked well of this book. Sometimes, you don't have to cook the story too much, the story is already there -- waiting to be eaten. Jake Halern did a good balance of being in the story and getting the hell out of the way.
So, next on my list (after I recover from the emotional toil of this book) is Mehrsa Baradaran's book (How the Other Half Banks) and Jayne Meyer's Dark Money.
12 of 15 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
The gritty, often shady, business of buying, selling, and collecting debt is told in this closeup view of some people in the industry. Strongly recommended!
1 of 1 people found this review helpful