How Do You Like Me Now? A True Story of Greed, Fear and Disaster as a Wall Street Day Trader

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Furthermore, some banks and hedge funds are more resistant than others to the Black Swan - we need to discriminate between them. Occasional blowups are good if they are small and recurrent. When you live in Manhattan, you notice the quality of the food is high because restaurants are rapidly punished for their mistakes. But unfortunately we have been experiencing the opposite: rare but deep and systemic blowups. Is there something fundamentally wrong with the structure of the U. What can be done to fix it? In the past, the financial world had a very diversified ecology: banks going bust on a steady basis.

They were not all homogeneous.

Almost 80% of US workers live from paycheck to paycheck. Here's why

Today the entire banking system is dominated by a few monster banks, and almost all have the same exposures. So the system became less and less volatile while becoming riskier and riskier. So we moved from the more resilient ecology to a more concentrated architecture. I used to say, "You trade with a bank, you end up trading with J.

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Morgan JPM , Fortune I prefer not to answer that, as I am trying to avoid talking about my nonintellectual activities. By Eric Gelman , assistant managing editor. Taleb says people misunderstand randomness and risk. Paulson's porous plan. The Tinkerbell economy.

Jason Kelly | Stock Market Contest by Jason Kelly

Chaos on Wall Street. The last days of Bear Stearns. What's wrong with Wall St. The great inflation cover-up. Why Wall St. More from Fortune Will Mmmhops be a hit? NBA confirms L. Subscribe to Fortune. Digg Facebook. Goldman Sachs slants research to help Democrats, top White House adviser says. China says it will never use its currency as a weapon in the trade war. Wal-Mart rules The retail giant tops the Fortune for the second year in a row. Who else made the list? America's top Tweeters.

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Libya's output is a fraction of global production, but it's crucial to the nation's economy. Don't bet on Canada. Once rates start to rise, things could get ugly fast for our neighbors to the north. Most Popular. Don't call it the next tech bubble More The mighty Hyundai juggernaut rolls Market Movers US Indices.

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  5. Will Mmmhops be a hit? See chart below. When it comes to dividing up the pie, most American workers today have little or no say. Over the same period time, antitrust enforcement has gone into remission. The US government has essentially given a green light to companies seeking to gain monopoly power over digital platforms and networks Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook ; wanting to merge into giant oligopolies pharmaceuticals, health insurers, airlines, seed producers, food processors, military contractors, Wall Street banks, internet service providers ; or intent on creating local monopolies food distributors, waste disposal companies, hospitals.

    This means workers are spending more on such goods and services than they would were these markets more competitive. Concentrated economic power has also given corporations more ability to hold down wages, because workers have less choice of whom to work for. And it has let companies impose on workers provisions that further weaken their bargaining power, such as anti-poaching and mandatory arbitration agreements. This great shift in bargaining power, from workers to corporations, has pushed a larger portion of national income into profits and a lower portion into wages than at any time since the second world war.

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    In recent years, most of those profits have gone into higher executive pay and higher share prices rather than into new investment or worker pay. Another consequence: corporations and wealthy individuals have had more money to pour into political campaigns and lobbying, while labor unions have had far less. In , for example, congressional campaign contributions by labor Political Action Committees were on par with corporate PAC contributions. But since , corporate PAC giving has grown at a much faster clip, and today the gulf is huge. Over the past year it not only ruled against public employee unions but also decided that workers cannot join together in class action suits when their employment contract calls for mandatory arbitration.

    The federal minimum wage has not been increased since , and is now about where it was in when adjusted for inflation. The combination of high corporate profits and growing corporate political power has created a vicious cycle: higher profits have generated more political influence, which has altered the rules of the game through legislative, congressional, and judicial action — enabling corporations to extract even more profit. The biggest losers, from whom most profits have been extracted, have been average workers. The shift from factory to office and other sedentary jobs created other social upheaval. The more recent shift in bargaining power from workers to large corporations — and consequentially, the dramatic widening of inequalities of income, wealth, and political power — has had a more unfortunate and, I fear, more lasting consequence: an angry working class vulnerable to demagogues peddling authoritarianism, racism, and xenophobia.

    Sign up to receive the latest US opinion pieces every weekday Blanketing all of this are stagnant wages and vanishing job benefits. It has a good jobs crisis. Facebook Twitter Pinterest. Topics US economy Opinion. US unions Economics comment. Reuse this content.