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The Go-Go Years: The Drama and Crashing Finale of Wall Street's Bullish 60s by Michael Lewis, John Brooks

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CHAPTER III

The Last Gatsby

1

The stock-market collapse of 1962—which broke the 1961 bucket shops and their eager patrons, sent the Dow industrials down more than 25 percent, and taught a whole new generation of investors and gamblers alike that it is possible to lose—looked back to the past rather than forward to the future. It was a thing not of firsts but of lasts: the last crisis in which little brokerage offices in distant towns and villages, and the amateur plungers who frequented them, were a significant factor; the last time in Wall Street that the tune was called not by the computer-assisted decisions of institutions like mutual funds and pension trusts, but by the emotions—fear and greed, chiefly—of individual men and women acting for ...

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