A STUDY IN FINANCIAL FANTASY, ENIGMA AND PHILOSOPHY
Written in an engaging and accessible style, Dinosaur Derivatives and Other Trades reveals the inherent philosophical paradoxes found in the world of finance. Jeremy Josse examines a variety of basic concepts to offer a financial expert′s view into the often contradictory maze of money.
Each topic in the book is introduced through a striking tale that highlights specific hypocrisies or moral dilemmas that lie at the heart of the financial system. The stories, however odd or enigmatic, offer a unique perspective on what′s going on "inside" the world of finance itself.
Finance is a living and breathing subject that we all contend with in our daily lives. With expertise and a good dose of wit, Josse explores a range of compelling questions such as: what is value? what is risk/uncertainty? what is financial innovation? And what is money?
" [Josse′s book] starts like an itch that needs scratching and won′t go away a discussion of the evolution of finance that I now find important and fascinating thanks to this book."
Steve Clemons, Editor at Large, The Atlantic
"A compelling, interdisciplinary journey into the arcane world of finance."
Bruce R. Magid, Dean International Business School, Brandeis University
About the Author ix
1 What is Value? Dinosaur Derivatives 1
2 What is Uncertainty? Joseph s Dreams 17
3 What is a Contract? 2,4,6,8 . . . 31
4 What is a Financial Instrument? A Legal Fiction 45
5 What is Financial Innovation? Railroads and the Credit Crisis 59
6 What is Ownership? Faust 75
7 What is Money? Cyber Cash 89
8 What is Taxation? Better than Theft 109
9 What is Fraud? When We Meet the Bad 121
10 What is Regulation? Antique Maps 141
11 What is a Bankrupt? A Financial Institution 157
End Notes 183