You're a genius. Nobody plays the financial markets better than you. What could possibly go wrong? Quants - quantitative analysts - were the maths masterminds let loose on Wall Street in the belief that their brilliant, impregnable computer programs would always beat the market. But as the catastrophic events of 2007 and 2008 showed, their seemingly failproof methods were little more than ticking timebombs. Inspired by the 'Godfather of Quants' - maths-professor-turned-gambler Ed Thorp, who began applying skills learned at the Vegas tables to the financial markets back in the 1950s - the quants achieved extraordinary success and massive wealth. This book charts their rise from obscurity to boom and then to bust, explaining why they were so confident - and how they got it so disastrously wrong.
Why Everyone Needs Analytical Skills Welcome to the age of data. No matter your interests (sports, movies, politics), your industry (finance, marketing, technology, manufacturing), or the type of organization you work for (big company, nonprofit, small start-up)—your world is awash with data. As a successful manager today, you must be able to make sense of all this information. You need to be conversant with analytical terminology and methods and able to work with quantitative information. This book promises to become your “quantitative literacy" guide—helping you develop the analytical skills you need right now in order to summarize data, find the meaning in it, and extract its value. In Keeping Up with the Quants, authors, professors, and analytics experts Thomas Davenport and Jinho Kim offer practical tools to improve your understanding of data analytics and enhance your thinking and decision making. You’ll gain crucial skills, including: • How to formulate a hypothesis • How to gather and analyze relevant data • How to interpret and communicate analytical results • How to develop habits of quantitative thinking • How to deal effectively with the “quants” in your organization Big data and the analytics based on it promise to change virtually every industry and business function over the next decade. If you don’t have a business degree or if you aren’t comfortable with statistics and quantitative methods, this book is for you. Keeping Up with the Quants will give you the skills you need to master this new challenge—and gain a significant competitive edge.
The third book in the Great Minds in Finance series examines the pricing of securities and the risk/reward trade off through the legends, contribution, and legacies of Jacob Marschak, William Sharpe, Fischer Black and Myron Scholes, and Robert Merton, influencing both theory and practice, answering the question 'how do we measure risk?'
In My Life as a Quant, Emanuel Derman relives his exciting journey as one of the first high-energy particle physicists to migrate to Wall Street. Page by page, Derman details his adventures in this field—analyzing the incompatible personas of traders and quants, and discussing the dissimilar nature of knowledge in physics and finance. Throughout this tale, he also reflects on the appropriate way to apply the refined methods of physics to the hurly-burly world of markets.
Stochastic Optimal Control (SOC)—a mathematical theory concerned with minimizing a cost (or maximizing a payout) pertaining to a controlled dynamic process under uncertainty—has proven incredibly helpful to understanding and predicting debt crises and evaluating proposed financial regulation and risk management. Stochastic Optimal Control and the U.S. Financial Debt Crisis analyzes SOC in relation to the 2008 U.S. financial crisis, and offers a detailed framework depicting why such a methodology is best suited for reducing financial risk and addressing key regulatory issues. Topics discussed include the inadequacies of the current approaches underlying financial regulations, the use of SOC to explain debt crises and superiority over existing approaches to regulation, and the domestic and international applications of SOC to financial crises. Principles in this book will appeal to economists, mathematicians, and researchers interested in the U.S. financial debt crisis and optimal risk management.
October 19th 1987 was a day of huge change for the global finance industry. On this day the stock market crashed, the Nobel Prize winning Black-Scholes formula failed and volatility smiles were born, and on this day Elie Ayache began his career, on the trading floor of the French Futures and Options Exchange. Experts everywhere sought to find a model for this event, and ways to simulate it in order to avoid a recurrence in the future, but the one thing that struck Elie that day was the belief that what actually happened on 19th October 1987 is simply non reproducible outside 19th October 1987 – you cannot reduce it to a chain of causes and effects, or even to a random generator, that can then be reproduced or represented in a theoretical framework. The Blank Swan is Elie's highly original treatise on the financial markets – presenting a totally revolutionary rethinking of derivative pricing and technology. It is not a diatribe against Nassim Taleb’s The Black Swan, but criticises the whole background or framework of predictable and unpredictable events – white and black swans alike - , i.e. the very category of prediction. In this revolutionary book, Elie redefines the components of the technology needed to price and trade derivatives. Most importantly, and drawing on a long tradition of philosophy of the event from Henri Bergson to Gilles Deleuze, to Alain Badiou, and on a recent brand of philosophy of contingency, embodied by the speculative materialism of Quentin Meillassoux, Elie redefines the market itself against the common perceptions of orthodox financial theory, general equilibrium theory and the sociology of finance. This book will change the way that we think about derivatives and approach the market. If anything derivatives should be renamed contingent claims, where contingency is now absolute and no longer derivative, and the market is just its medium. The book also establishes the missing link between quantitative modelling (no longer dependent on probability theory but on a novel brand of mathematics which Elie calls the mathematics of price) and the reality of the market.
A comprehensive look at the tools and techniques used in quantitative equity management Some books attempt to extend portfolio theory, but the real issue today relates to the practical implementation of the theory introduced by Harry Markowitz and others who followed. The purpose of this book is to close the implementation gap by presenting state-of-the art quantitative techniques and strategies for managing equity portfolios. Throughout these pages, Frank Fabozzi, Sergio Focardi, and Petter Kolm address the essential elements of this discipline, including financial model building, financial engineering, static and dynamic factor models, asset allocation, portfolio models, transaction costs, trading strategies, and much more. They also provide ample illustrations and thorough discussions of implementation issues facing those in the investment management business and include the necessary background material in probability, statistics, and econometrics to make the book self-contained. Written by a solid author team who has extensive financial experience in this area Presents state-of-the art quantitative strategies for managing equity portfolios Focuses on the implementation of quantitative equity asset management Outlines effective analysis, optimization methods, and risk models In today's financial environment, you have to have the skills to analyze, optimize and manage the risk of your quantitative equity investments. This guide offers you the best information available to achieve this goal.
The Secret Intellectual History of the New Corporate World
Author: Walter Kiechel
Publisher: Harvard Business Press
Category: Business & Economics
Imagine, if you can, the world of business - without corporate strategy. Remarkably, fifty years ago that's the way it was. Businesses made plans, certainly, but without understanding the underlying dynamics of competition, costs, and customers. It was like trying to design a large-scale engineering project without knowing the laws of physics. But in the 1960s, four mavericks and their posses instigated a profound shift in thinking that turbocharged business as never before, with implications far beyond what even they imagined. In The Lords of Strategy, renowned business journalist and editor Walter Kiechel tells, for the first time, the story of the four men who invented corporate strategy as we know it and set in motion the modern, multibillion-dollar consulting industry: Bruce Henderson, founder of Boston Consulting Group Bill Bain, creator of Bain & Company Fred Gluck, longtime Managing Director of McKinsey & Company Michael Porter, Harvard Business School professor Providing a window into how to think about strategy today, Kiechel tells their story with novelistic flair. At times inspiring, at times nearly terrifying, this book is a revealing account of how these iconoclasts and the organizations they led revolutionized the way we think about business, changed the very soul of the corporation, and transformed the way we work.
Research and Decision Making in a World of Extreme Volatility
Author: Kenneth A. Posner
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Category: Business & Economics
Kenneth A. Posner spent close to two decades as a Wall Street analyst, tracking the so-called "specialty finance" sector, which included controversial companies such as Countrywide, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, CIT, and MasterCard many of which were caught in the subprime mortgage and capital markets crisis of 2007. While extreme volatility is nothing new in finance, the recent downturn caught many off guard, indicating that the traditional approach to decision making had let them down. Introducing a new framework for handling and evaluating extreme risk, Posner draws on years of experience to show how decision makers can best cope with the "Black Swans" of our time. Posner's shrewd assessment combines the classic fundamental research approach of Benjamin Graham and David Dodd with more recent developments in cognitive science, computational theory, and quantitative finance. He outlines a probabilistic approach to decision making that involves forecasting across a range of scenarios, and he explains how to balance confidence, react accurately to fast-breaking information, overcome information overload, zero in on the critical issues, penetrate the information asymmetry shielding corporate executives, and integrate the power of human intuition with sophisticated analytics. Emphasizing the computational resources we already have at our disposal our computers and our minds Posner offers a new track to decision making for analysts, investors, traders, corporate executives, risk managers, regulators, policymakers, journalists, and anyone who faces a world of extreme volatility.
Trading Regime Analysis is a groundbreaking work on how markets behave and how to profit from this behaviour. The book describes that it is the human nature of markets which explains why this behaviour exists and whether one believes in fundamental or technical market analysis, the ebb and flow of volatility is the one undeniable truth that exists in financial and commodity markets. It is the up and down cycles of volatility that is the manifestation of human psychology as the ultimate driver of markets and volatility, like human behaviour, has a distinct cycle to it. Offers in detail the methods that can be used to identify whether a market is about to start trending or about to enter a period of range trading Highlights important applications for this analysis for institutional investors, asset allocators, hedge fund managers and retail investors Provides unique content as there are no existing titles on trading regime analysis