Freud in the City [Hardback]by David Freud
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Description of Freud in the CityA phone call from a head-hunter in 1983 plunged an unsuspecting FT journalist into one of the most turbulent periods in the City's history.
David Freud, great grandson of Sigmund, joined stockbrokers Rowe & Pitman just as the global finance revolution took off. His first-hand account of some of the largest and most controversial deals of the last twenty years reveals the tensions, the rivalries, the cock-ups, and the break-neck pace of life in the City during this period.
The reality of life in the City confounded David Freud's preconceptions. Far from being an anonymous shuffler of money between faceless institutions, it proved to be a battle-ground of individualism, dominated by powerful characters accustomed to taking tough decisions in a pressurised, gossip-fuelled environment. And as the global revolution advanced, a sense of desperation ignited extreme levels of competition, with too many financial institutions jockeying for position in a diminishing marketplace.
David Freud was at the centre of it all. He played a pivotal role in the flotation of Eurotunnel, against the backdrop of Black Monday. His Warburg Euro Disney team launched the first truly pan-European flotation, raising £600m - only to be faced with potential disaster when the price went into tail-spin. David Freud writes about the highs and lows of financing the Channel Tunnel Railway Link and admitting to Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, that they'd got their sums massively - by £1.2bn - wrong.
He was part of the Warburg Group's break-neck expansion which ended in humiliation and collapse and played a key role in its renaissance as UBS as its new Swiss owners rebuilt the bank's position in the financial markets of London and around the world.
This inside story of the City at its most dynamic is, as playwright David Hare says, "a highly readable, morally ambiguous account of twenty crazy years of buoyant capitalism".
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Contents of Freud in the CityIntroduction: So You're the Banker
1. An Accidental Career - Recruitment into the City
2. Equity is Funy Stuff - Learning the Trade
3. Thatcher's Revolution - Privatising the UK
4. All Together Now - Big Bang
5. Tunnel Vision - Eurotunnel
6. Mickey does Paris - Euro Disney
7. World War III - The International Equity Market
8. Principles of Pre-emption - The Collapse of Warburg
9. Swiss Roll In - SBC Takes over Warburg
10. Rail Britannia - Railtrack and the Channel Tunnel Link
11. High Noon - The Supremacy of the Sectors
12. Deutschland AG - Germany during the Dotcom Boom
13. Swansong - Recession and retirement
List of Transactions
Glossary of financial terms