Prologue of ''The''
''The willingness of a Wall Street investment bank to pay me hundreds of thousands of dollars to dispense investment advice to grown-ups remains a mystery to me to this day. I was twenty-four years old, with no experience of, or particular interest in, guessing which stocks and bonds would rise and which would fall. Wall Street's essential function was to allocate capital: to decide who should get it and who should not. Believe me when I tell you that I hadn't the first clue. I'd never taken an accounting course, never run a business, never even had savings of my own to manage. I'd stumbled into a job at Salomon Brothers in 1985, and stumbled out, richer, in 1988, and even though I wrote a book about the experience, the whole thing still strikes me as totally preposterous--which is one reason the money was so easy to walk away from. I figured the situation was unsustainable. Sooner rather than later, someone was going to identify me, along with a lot of people more or less like me, as a fraud. Sooner rather than later would come a Great Reckoning, when Wall Street would wake up and hundreds, if not thousands, of young people like me, who had no business making huge bets with other people's money or persuading other people to make those bets, would be expelled from finance. ''
Is he right? Are investment bankers just expensive and useless advisers on gambling?