Acknowledgments ix Introduction 1 Chapter 1 Kirk Kerkorian: Due Diligence Is Due Every Time 11 Chapter 2 David Bonderman: Does This Mean I Also Overpaid for the Rolling Stones? 31 Chapter 3 Aubrey McClendon: Falling on the Wrong Edge of the Two-Edged Leverage Sword 51 Chapter 4 Bill Ackman: Detour from Discipline 69 Chapter 5 Nick Maounis: "Trust, but Verify..." 89 Chapter 6 Leon Cooperman: The Pirate of Prague Meets the Prince of Princeton-and the Boy from the Bronx Gets Squeezed 109 Chapter 7 Richard Pzena: Fashions Change, History Persists-or Does It? 129 Chapter 8 Geoff Grant: Style Drift-It's Hot Till It's Not 149 Chapter 9 Volkswagen and Porsche: The Hare Finally Wins and the Shorts Get Squeezed 171 Chapter 10 Chris Davis: It Was Dressed like an Insurance Company, but It Didn't Quack Like One... 195 Chapter 11 Madoff Investors: Hook, Line, and Sunk 215 Epilogue Me Too: Mistakes I've Made and Lessons I've Learned 235 Notes 237 Glossary 241 About the Author 249 Index 251
STEPHEN L. WEISS has spent the last twenty-three years on Wall Street working for some of the industry's most prestigious firms. He is currently a Senior Managing Director and Head of Equities at an investment bank in New York City. Weiss started in institutional sales at Oppenheimer & Co., then moved to Salomon Brothers, where he eventually co-managed the firm's 500 person global research department and became a spokesperson for the equity division. Weiss also worked at SAC Capital, co-managing the firm for legendary hedge fund manager Steven Cohen. Subsequent to SAC, Weiss joined Lehman Brothers in senior management, helping to restore the once prominent equity business to the pinnacle of the industry.
?Concentrating on personal finance don?ts is a clever idea. Mr. Weiss writes about 11 big investors ? from the very well known, like the billionaire Kirk Kerkorian, to others like Richard S. Pzena, who runs his own investment firm. The author zeros in on one enormous error that he says each of the 11 made ? a mistake, in the words of the book?s title, that cost each $1 billion or more? the book is an intriguing reminder of what not to do when investing your money.? ?The New York Times ?Great investors are often put on a pedestal and worshiped by those trying to emulate them. This book removes the pedestal and allows you to truly learn from them. Author Stephen Weiss? has truly crafted a great read and has transformed the lessons of legendary investors into an entertaining and educational narrative. Definitely check out The Billion Dollar Mistake as you're bound to become a better investor from it.? ? Market Folly Weiss creates a fascinating look at these cases with up close narrative reporting. In some instances the famous investors themselves review their mistakes and provide a surprising candor on how and why they failed. You almost feel like an eavesdropper in a closed door meeting learning untold secrets. Who knew investing could be so riveting! - 800 CEO Read (Dec. 2009) When a great investor flubs it, everyone can learn a lesson. With that in mind, author Stephen Weiss delves into the biggest mistakes of such Wall Street luminaries as Bill Ackman, Leon Cooperman and Richard Pzena. ? Barron?s (Dec. 2009)