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The Sages: Warren Buffett, George Soros, Paul Volcker, and the Maelstrom of Markets

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Throughout the violent financial disruptions of the past several years, three men have stood out as beacons of judgment and wisdom: Warren Buffett, George Soros, and Paul Volcker. Though their experiences and styles vary—Buffett is the canny stock market investor; Soros is the reader of shifting global tides in trade and currencies; and Volcker is the regulator and governo Throughout the violent financial disruptions of the past several years, three men have stood out as beacons of judgment and wisdom: Warren Buffett, George Soros, and Paul Volcker. Though their experiences and styles vary—Buffett is the canny stock market investor; Soros is the reader of shifting global tides in trade and currencies; and Volcker is the regulator and governor, sheriff and clean-up crew—they have very much in common.All three men have more than fifty years of deep involvement in markets. All are skeptical of Wall Street frenzies. They believe that markets tend to be right, but usually only over the medium term. They have seen too many cycles of herd-driven, emotion-riding booms and busts to make their views hostage to the sweeping and simplistic assumptions of “efficient-markets” models. With the benefit of his own deep understanding of markets and finance, Morris brilliantly analyzes the records of these men, distilling their wisdom and experience—and argues for the importance of consistent values in navigating the treacherous terrain of today’s globalized world.


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Throughout the violent financial disruptions of the past several years, three men have stood out as beacons of judgment and wisdom: Warren Buffett, George Soros, and Paul Volcker. Though their experiences and styles vary—Buffett is the canny stock market investor; Soros is the reader of shifting global tides in trade and currencies; and Volcker is the regulator and governo Throughout the violent financial disruptions of the past several years, three men have stood out as beacons of judgment and wisdom: Warren Buffett, George Soros, and Paul Volcker. Though their experiences and styles vary—Buffett is the canny stock market investor; Soros is the reader of shifting global tides in trade and currencies; and Volcker is the regulator and governor, sheriff and clean-up crew—they have very much in common.All three men have more than fifty years of deep involvement in markets. All are skeptical of Wall Street frenzies. They believe that markets tend to be right, but usually only over the medium term. They have seen too many cycles of herd-driven, emotion-riding booms and busts to make their views hostage to the sweeping and simplistic assumptions of “efficient-markets” models. With the benefit of his own deep understanding of markets and finance, Morris brilliantly analyzes the records of these men, distilling their wisdom and experience—and argues for the importance of consistent values in navigating the treacherous terrain of today’s globalized world.

30 review for The Sages: Warren Buffett, George Soros, Paul Volcker, and the Maelstrom of Markets

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jeff

    Short but dense and not for the layman. Good analysis of the dangers of strict adherence to "Chicago school monetarism" and "neo-Keynesesian" economics. I also enjoyed the contrasting styles of investing by George Soros and Warren Buffett which nevertheless resulted in similar successes. Paul Volckner's time at the Fed also demonstrated regulatory balance and foresight that might be termed "success." Morris does an excellent job demonstrating the common sense that Volker, Soros, and Buffett appl Short but dense and not for the layman. Good analysis of the dangers of strict adherence to "Chicago school monetarism" and "neo-Keynesesian" economics. I also enjoyed the contrasting styles of investing by George Soros and Warren Buffett which nevertheless resulted in similar successes. Paul Volckner's time at the Fed also demonstrated regulatory balance and foresight that might be termed "success." Morris does an excellent job demonstrating the common sense that Volker, Soros, and Buffett apply to challenging financial situations. Their common-sense balanced practices and ideologies predicted the 2008 financial crisis when all others felt that these three sages were past their prime. This is a great summation of each man's great abilities and foresight and the inability of Ivy League economists to really predict the future.

  2. 5 out of 5

    thewestchestarian

    Exceedingly straightforward bios of the 3 business giants. Very little exposition is required about the book – Morris presents clear-cut medium-length biographical sketches of the greatest two contemporary American (where’s Carlos Slim’s bio?) investors and another on the government regulator Paul Volcker. He concludes with an essay that promises to synthesize the learnings from the three lives into a coherent whole but rather presents the tired to the point of exhaustion argument that economist Exceedingly straightforward bios of the 3 business giants. Very little exposition is required about the book – Morris presents clear-cut medium-length biographical sketches of the greatest two contemporary American (where’s Carlos Slim’s bio?) investors and another on the government regulator Paul Volcker. He concludes with an essay that promises to synthesize the learnings from the three lives into a coherent whole but rather presents the tired to the point of exhaustion argument that economists make poor prognostications (his conclusion that economists are akin to meteorologists is insulting - at least the local weather girl can tell you it will be warm come July). He does a little compare and contrast with Buffet and Soros but mostly emphasizes that they exercised diametrically different trading styles – not a particularly show-stopping insight. So the three subjects’ bios and the concluding essay do not concordant book make but do the parts of the whole work? To a degree, yes, Morris lays out the lives and jaw-dropping accomplishments (had you invested $10,000USD in Soros’ fund at inception you would have cashed out with $43,000,000USD) in a clean, linear march from cradle to current economic catastrophe. There is a dearth of interesting asides or repeatable tales from their lives and Morris’ style is the classic academic style of first saying what you are going to say, saying it and then recapping what you said. If you need source material for a school project on any of the three crib from Morris. If you need a more substantial or entertaining recounting insight consult other sources such as the 900 page “The Snowball” about Buffet or any of the first-person accounts from Soros.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jose Yong

    Pretty good outline of biographies of Warren Buffet, George Soros, Paul Volcker. I like the author's conclusion of the book Pretty good outline of biographies of Warren Buffet, George Soros, Paul Volcker. I like the author's conclusion of the book

  4. 4 out of 5

    Joel Gray

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. FOR INVESTORS AS A WHOLE, RETURNS DECREASE AS MOTION INCREASES. Soros sniffs out incipient bubbles and rides them, confident he can get out before the pop. From 1969 to 2000, when he retired from active FM, Soros Quantum Fund returned 31%pa. Soros respects the herd. Not because its right, but because its like the ocean. Druckenmiller says Soros is a magnificent loss taker. He gets rid of it and doesn't worry about his ego or what the world is going to say. Druckenmiller said Soros had an unmatched ab FOR INVESTORS AS A WHOLE, RETURNS DECREASE AS MOTION INCREASES. Soros sniffs out incipient bubbles and rides them, confident he can get out before the pop. From 1969 to 2000, when he retired from active FM, Soros Quantum Fund returned 31%pa. Soros respects the herd. Not because its right, but because its like the ocean. Druckenmiller says Soros is a magnificent loss taker. He gets rid of it and doesn't worry about his ego or what the world is going to say. Druckenmiller said Soros had an unmatched ability of pulling the trigger and putting it all on the line. The word "credit" comes from the Latin word for "belief". WB has a near photographic recall of voluminous amounts of financial material. Buffett Partnership didn't charge asset-based management fees. The first 4% of earning went to the investors and then 50% above this went to WB. WB also took 25% of any losses. Mountains of junk bonds were sold by those who didn't care to those who didn't think.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Sir-Brighton Khumalo

    It's a very cool read if you don't have the time to read George Soros's Alchemy of Finance and Buffett's Snowball. There's always something new to learn from these very different but very successful investors. The Paul bit was very fascinating because he seems to have the talent and knack for turnaround situations. It's a very cool read if you don't have the time to read George Soros's Alchemy of Finance and Buffett's Snowball. There's always something new to learn from these very different but very successful investors. The Paul bit was very fascinating because he seems to have the talent and knack for turnaround situations.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Viktor Nilsson

    3 well-written short biographies on 3 intellectual giants. Strikes a bad balance between depth and accessibility - too tough for the layman to digest, too shallow to bring much news to the professional. The author's own conclusions are very enlightening however. 3 well-written short biographies on 3 intellectual giants. Strikes a bad balance between depth and accessibility - too tough for the layman to digest, too shallow to bring much news to the professional. The author's own conclusions are very enlightening however.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Vít Hořejší

    A very nice summary of about half a century seen through the lenses of three distinct financial masterminds.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Mo

    Not worth listening or reading

  9. 4 out of 5

    Valters Bondars

    7/10

  10. 4 out of 5

    Mercurialgem

    I liked it because it was a short little bio on each of them. It could be a little confusing with all the financial terminology but I still enjoyed it. I got it bc of Mr. Buffett but enjoyed learning about the others. I would recommend this as a book you check out at the library instead of spending money on it.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Tom Schulte

    V ery insightfulk views by three financial sages about how the world economy got to where it is. In here, Buffett overs three sage principals to govern investing: Don't invest in what you don't understand, don't take advice from those that get rich investing other's money and go for moderate growth - it's sustainable V ery insightfulk views by three financial sages about how the world economy got to where it is. In here, Buffett overs three sage principals to govern investing: Don't invest in what you don't understand, don't take advice from those that get rich investing other's money and go for moderate growth - it's sustainable

  12. 5 out of 5

    Brian

    A churned out book as simple as a senior thesis. Subjects are lauded as virtually flawless; economics is treated as a joke. Not enough substance to back up any of these points. But you will learn a little something about each figure, so the book as some value as a quick read.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Effendy Yahaya

    To discover their facts in a quick review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ron Jensen

    Enjoyed the book, although this is one I should have read in hard copy rather than an audio book, due to the complexity of the financial jargon.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Geoffrey Sadek

    Pretty dry, pretty simplistic. If you're into history, there are probably better books than this. Pretty dry, pretty simplistic. If you're into history, there are probably better books than this.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sulaiman

  17. 4 out of 5

    Majekodunmi Omololuoye

  18. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas Flood

  19. 4 out of 5

    Roy Sitepu

  20. 5 out of 5

    Saz

  21. 4 out of 5

    Doug

  22. 4 out of 5

    Lesa Danielsen

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jason

  24. 4 out of 5

    Damir

  25. 4 out of 5

    luis Arturo cahuana cuentas

  26. 4 out of 5

    Peter Jacobsson

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jeremy

  28. 5 out of 5

    Alexandre

  29. 5 out of 5

    Umang

  30. 5 out of 5

    Matthew

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