The Go-Go Years: The Drama and Crashing Finale of Wall Street's Bullish 60s
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A humorous and keen look at the roller-coaster boom and bust of the 1960s and 1970s by the New York Times–bestselling author of Business Adventures
John Brooks blends humor and astute analysis in this tale of the staggering "go-go" growth of the 1960s stock market and the ensuing crashes of the 1970s. Swiftly rising stocks promised fast money to investors, and voracious cupidity drove the market. But the bull market couldn't last forever, and the fall was just as staggering as the ascent.
Including the astounding story of H. Ross Perot's loss of $450 million in one day; the tale of America's "Last Gatsby," Eddie Gilbert; and the account of financier Saul Steinberg's failed grab for Chemical Bank, this book is replete with hallmark financial acumen and vivid storytelling. A classic of business history, The Go-Go Years provides John Brooks's signature insight into the events of yesteryear and stands the test of time.
as it appeared on the most-actively-traded list day after day at ever-rising prices. To focus the spotlight of glamour still more sharply on its company name, Parvin-Dohrmann contrived, through Korshak’s ubiquitous contacts with West Coast characters, to buy for $15 million the Stardust Hotel-Casino on the famous Vegas Strip. (Korshak got a $500,000 fee on that one.) Dazzled, the public took the bait and gobbled up Parvin-Dohrmann stock. By January 10, 1969, the price was up to $68.50, and a few
open a wire between Wall Street and Washington that would be crucially useful in the weeks to come. In early May, matters on Wall Street went from bad to worse. On the third, Galbraith, one of whose well-known books is a study of the 1929 crash, came out with a newspaper article drawing a series of striking parallels between the current situation and that of 1929: excessive speculation, overly leveraged holding companies, inflated investment funds, funds that invested solely in other funds, and
arrogant about. There was an air of sullen defiance, in marked contrast to the Goodbody people, who had obviously had a genuine feeling of letting down the Stock Exchange and their own customers. I never felt that with the du Pont representatives. They seemed to have no conception of what it meant, in terms of responsibility, to have over three hundred thousand customers’ money in your hands. As a result, some of the meetings were nightmarish. Of course, Tony du Pont had a hard problem—he had
it seemed, was happy. If so, it seems fair to assume that the happiness was attributable not just to the prospect of peace but rather more to the fact that everyone was making money hand over fist. To be sure, a strain of genuine pacifist idealism is discernible in Wall Street in 1968. (For one example, a young fund manager named Fred Mates—third and last of the Freds—went so far as to decline to invest in companies making armaments because he did not choose to profit from the war.) But
dollars abroad put the dollar constantly in trouble on the international markets. Foreign wars, it suddenly became clear, were now a national liability. Hard heads and a soft currency had made Wall Street doveish. Being soulless, the market cannot be congratulated on a spiritual conversion. Still, those wild days in April 1968 were a time and place when human self-interest appeared to be more than customarily enlightened. It was a time when Wall Street accordingly took on a new and