The Hour Between Dog and Wolf : Risk-taking, Gut Feelings and the Biology of Boom and Bust, Paperback

The Hour Between Dog and Wolf : Risk-taking, Gut Feelings and the Biology of Boom and Bust Paperback

4 out of 5 (2 ratings)

Description

Now shortlisted for the 2012 Financial Times Business Book of the Year Award and the Wellcome Trust Book Prize, The Hour Between Dog and Wolf is a resonant exploration of economic behaviour and its consequences.

Shortlisted for the 2012 Financial Times and Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award and the Wellcome Trust Book Prize, this startling and unconventional book from neuroscientist and former Wall Street trader John Coates shows us the bankers in their natural environment, revealing how their biochemistry has a lasting and significant impact on our economy.

We learn how risk stimulates the most primitive part of the banker's brain and how making the deals our bank balances depend on provokes an overwhelming fight-or-flight response.

Constant swinging between aggression and apprehension impairs their judgment, causing economic upheaval in the wider world.

The transformation between each split-second decision is what Coates calls the hour between dog and wolf, and understanding the biology behind bubbles and crashes may be the key to stabilising the markets.

Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 304 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Behavioural economics
  • ISBN: 9780007413522

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Reviews

Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by
5

This is an outstanding book: well-written, informative and deeply engaging. It provides a summary of the latest research into the physiological effects of stress and risk-taking, with particular reference to financial markets. The picture it paints is absolutely compelling, and should be read by anyone who works with (or near) bank traders of any kind - the managers of those traders should be particularly interested!

Review by
3

The author is a former bank trader, now a physiology researcher. He considers the impact of physiology on the performance of traders. He applies the "winner's effect" of successful harem breeders such as walrus and seals, to the activities of traders - when on a successful roll they get high doses of testosterone, feel invincible, and end up taking unreasonable risks, which results in erratic ups and downs in their performance. He also examines the corollary, where a traders undergoes prolonged stress during a downturn, and how the impact of stress on the body leads to excessive risk aversion. Amazing stuff. Clearly the application of these insights goes far beyond bank traders, but that field is the author's background and it makes for a highly topical book. Read December 2014