As I pen these acknowledgments, I want to foremost thank the man who urged me to write this book and advised me to just tell the story. Ronald Coase has personally inspired and mentored me for the past four decades. My gratitude toward him cannot be described. I have been visiting Professor Coase for many years, before and during the time this book was being written. We often discussed the book over lunch and he gave me invaluable advice. He possessed the clarity common to great teachers. When I finished the first half of the book, I nervously handed him the manuscript like a student completing an exam. I came back two weeks later and asked him what he thought of it. After complimenting me on my achievement, he added, in a soft English accent, “It's one damn thing after another.” His words meant a lot to me. I was finally telling the story he asked me to tell. The process of financial innovation was—and is—one damn thing after another. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

I have long since discovered the flaws of human memory. Thankfully, there were many friends who helped me recount the events captured in this book. Natalie Persky, Tom Cushing, Mike Walsh, Mike MacGregor, Rob McAndrew, Rohan Ma, Jeff Huang, Fran Kenck, and Kathy Lynn Minervino-Myers all delivered colorful personal accounts of what took place in the past decade. Neil Eckert, Helene Crook, Peter Koster, Sara Stahl, and Albert DeHaan generously shared their memories of the creation of the European ...

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