The curious thing about the traders at Long-Term Capital is that right to the bitter end they were doing exactly what the were paid to do: placing large, complicated bets in obscure markets and arcane securities. John Meriwether was paid to borrow tens of billions of dollars and play liar's poker with the Danish mortgage market. He just wasn't supposed to lose. . . It is precisely because Long-Term Capital was doing what it was supposed to be doing that its failure is so interesting. In just the past few days the stocks of financial institutions have tanked, the dollar has fallen, and the Federal Reserve rushed in to organize a bailout. If a handful of more or less honest guys with Ph.D.'s can set up shop in Connecticut and within a few years destabilize the entire global financial order, something has gone wrong.
Michael Lewis (author of Liar's Poker, The Money Culture, and Trail Fever) "In Defense of John Meriwether" from Bloomberg (9/25/98)I'm clutching my teddy bear, pulling the blanket over my head . . . . In markets like these, it's an approach that works as well as any.
Ralph Wanger, Acorn Funds Manager and author of A Zebra in Lion Country (Smart Money's Quote of the Month - 10/98)
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