Chapter Two


Beautiful lies – the ‘sell’ side

‘Beautiful lies’ are the lies that we like to believe; we know they are not true but everything makes us want to believe them – that is what makes them beautiful. The derivatives business is filled with them.

Today airwaves are filled with endless chatter about money, exchange rates and share prices. Whole TV channels are devoted to money, for example CNBC and Bloomberg TV. Attractive, botoxed talking heads incessantly report on Greenspan’s testimony to Congress, Microsoft’s share price and the Japanese trade surplus.

A staple of TV money shows is a ten-second shot of an exchange trading floor, with men dressed in funny colourful jackets making curious hand signals ...

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