Monkey Business: A Monkey's ReviewHF
Wondering where WSO’s simian theme comes from? Look no further.
If you ask any business school student or young analyst to name one book that got them excited about finance or investment banking, this would probably be it. And for good reason; it’s extremely readable and features characters who find themselves in the same position as many of us on this site are, or would like to be.
and Peter Troob are summer analysts who receive the coveted full-time offers from DLJ. The book is full of fascinating and often humorous observations about the inner workings of the industry. What’s it like pulling an all-nighter on a pitch-book, running a , going to the printer, trying to keep sane in the insane asylum? It’s all here.
What tends to be underreported about “” is its life lessons. Most people who have read it remember the hilarious tales of fellow analysts passing out during the meetings with senior management, Troob’s weeklong flight all over Europe on a total of 6 hours of sleep (for the week), and of course, the holiday party/boozefest (I gotta admit, that last one still has me laughing).
The problem is, a lot of people tend to remember the book more as this Wall Street romp, and forget that there is a story involved, and a rather depressing one at that. It’s no secret that the two main characters eventually become so disillusioned and fed up with investment banking that they quit.
It’s about having your conceptions about the real world shattered, or as the writers would put it, getting bitch-slapped by reality.
That’s really what “” is about; it’s just been overshadowed by the laughs. It takes a while for the life lessons of the book to sink in. It may get you excited about banking, but it could just as easily have the opposite effect. The writers might call that “waking up.”
Later editions of “” have a timely “where are they now?” section on the crisis, and shows where they, their friends, and the firm have wound up since then.
Since this is probably WSO’s most widely-read book, I open the floor for everyone to name their favorite part of this wonderful read. Or maybe you think I’m wrong? You don’t have to take my word for it.
Read up, monkeys—the first time for the laughs, the second time (and all the times after that) for your career decisions.
In addition, may I offer my nomination for the WSO official theme song:
Monkey’s Review 1: Barbarians At the Gate
Monkey’s Review 2: The Financier
Monkey’s Review 3: Decision Points
Monkey’s Review 4: Debunkery
Monkey’s Review 5: When Genius Failed
Monkey’s Review 6: Monkey Business
Monkey’s Review 7: Death Of The Banker
Monkey’s Review 8: A Journey
Monkey’s Review 9: Damn It Feels Good To Be A Banker
Monkey’s Review 10: The Quants
Monkey’s Review 11: All About Hedge Funds
Monkey’s Review 12: The Unlikely Disciple
Monkey’s Review 13: Adventure Capitalist
Monkey’s Review 14: The Hedge Fund Book
Monkey’s Review 15: Investing In Hedge Fund of Funds
Monkey’s Review 16: Hilarity Ensues
Monkey’s Review 17: The Prince
Monkey’s Review 18: Markets Never Forget (But People Do)
Monkey’s Review 19: The Money Culture