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The Physics of Wall Street: A Brief History of Predicting the Unpredictable

By James Owen Weatherall

The Physics of Wall Street: A Brief History of Predicting the Unpredictable

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Started reading:
12 March 2013
Finished reading:
13 March 2013

Review

Thomas Carlyle once dubbed economics “the dismal science,” but this was long before the physicists came, bringing with them original theories and new approaches, some of which actually worked, sort of. If you’d like all your investments boiled down to handy formulae, this is not the book for you: economic models may be an improvement over what went before, but they don’t guarantee success. As a history, though, it’s fascinating. Most interesting are the stories of the individual scientists who tried to meld finance and physics; some were more successful than others, but isn’t that always the case with markets?