The Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Michael Perino

Narrated By: George K. Wilson

Publisher: Tantor Media

Date: October 2010

Duration: 15 hours 0 minutes

Summary:

In The Hellhound of Wall Street, Michael Perino recounts in riveting detail the 1933 hearings that put Wall Street on trial for the Great Crash. Never before in American history had so many financial titans been called to account before the public, and they had come within a few weeks of emerging unscathed. By the time Ferdinand Pecora, a Sicilian immigrant and former New York prosecutor, took over as chief counsel, the investigation had dragged on ineffectively for nearly a year and was universally written off as dead.

The Hellhound of Wall Street provides a minute-by-minute account of the ten dramatic days when Pecora turned the hearings around, cross-examining the officers of National City Bank (today's Citigroup), particularly its chairman, Charles Mitchell, one of the best known bankers of his day. Mitchell strode into the hearing room in obvious disdain for the proceedings, but he left utterly disgraced. Pecora's rigorous questioning revealed that City Bank was guilty of shocking financial abuses, from selling worthless bonds to manipulating its stock price. Most offensive of all was the excessive compensation and bonuses awarded to its executives for peddling shoddy securities to the American public.

Pecora became an unlikely hero to a beleaguered nation. The man whom the press called 'the hellhound of Wall Street' was the son of a struggling factory worker. Precocious and determined, he became one of New York's few Italian American lawyers at a time when Italians were frequently stereotyped as anarchic criminals. The image of an immigrant lawyer challenging a blue-blooded Wall Street tycoon was just one more sign that a fundamental shift was taking place in America.

By creating the sensational headlines needed to galvanize public opinion for reform, the Pecora hearings spurred Congress to take unprecedented steps to rein in the freewheeling banking industry and led directly to the New Deal's landmark economic reforms. A gripping courtroom drama with remarkable contemporary relevance, The Hellhound of Wall Street brings to life a crucial turning point in American financial history.

Genres:

  • Steve Heller

    A fascinating, well-written book telling the story of the investigation by the Senate Banking and Currency Committee into Wall Street abuses and crimes in the run-up to the Great Depression. And speaking of depressing things, their self-justifying excuses and crimes were no different than those of Wall Street in recent years. Plus ca meme, plus ca change.

Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance

by Michael Perino

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Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance, Michael Perino
Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance, Michael Perino
This title is due for release on October 20, 2010.

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Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance, Michael Perino
This title is due for release on October 20, 2010
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Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance, Michael Perino
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Hellhound of Wall Street: How Ferdinand Pecora's Investigation of the Great Crash Forever Changed American Finance, Michael Perino

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