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Where does The South Sea Bubble and Tulipomania: Financial Madness and Delusion rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?
Requires some attention because the writing is cleverly crafted in a bit antique manner. But a real hoot.
What was one of the most memorable moments of The South Sea Bubble and Tulipomania: Financial Madness and Delusion?
It all sounds so recently familiar. Hundreds of years later.
What about Greg Wagland’s performance did you like?
Good Brit presentation of compound sentences. So listen up!
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Two or three.
Any additional comments?
This book is about irrational financial behavior of the masses. Mackay wrote the book more than 150 years ago, but the irrational behavior persists today.
One side lesson that was unintended by the author is that popular and governmental reaction to the bursting of a financial bubble can be as irrational as the behavior that created the bubble.
Legal entities that shielded investors from risk such as corporations were made illegal in a way that must have stifled innovation for years. The government enacted ex post facto laws that operated retroactively to made criminal acts of acts that were legal when committed. That is people were punished for doing acts that were legal when they acted.
At that time the common law and the law of equity were probably robust enough to sort out the fraudulent acts and punish corporate ventures that were never meant to be valid business deals. That is ventures that were only meant to fleece the purchasers of the stock. The mob acted first.
The primitive nature of accounting and apparent lack of auditing of corporations or governmental regulation of dangerous financial mechanisms was apparent.
There are lessons in this book that should have given pause to investors in the recent financial melt down. There are also lessons for the regulators and legislators -- the reaction to market fraud should be vigorous but not excessive.