Rich as sin: money and murder on Wall Street

The rewards of Wall Street come fast and furious. Too fast for some; not fast enough for others. The Street is where big money is made and it’s all based on the same drive – greed. This is where the Milken’s and Boesky’s seemed joined at the hip in a cacophony of insatiable debauchery.

So, how far would you go to be rich? Not just comfortably rich, but rich beyond your comprehension of rich? Rich as sin? Richer than Midas?

In Nothing Personal: A Novel of Wall Street Mike Offit plumbs the deeper depths in which greed sinks to keep the wealth rolling in. Having worked the ‘Street’ for 25 years, Offit has written a novel that takes his readers on an fascinating exploration into the world of big business and guilty pleasures, where the seduction of wealth, and the excesses of 1980s Wall Street, come jumping off the pages. He lived the life, made the money, and watched the bodies ­— and reputations — topple from their golden parachute perches.

Each chapter in NOTHING PERSONAL is as juicy as a gossip session at the office water cooler about rule breakers and rule benders, risk and profit, dealing and double-dealing. However, what begins as a subplot, involving huge amounts of money, turns into a dangerous game with unexplained fatalities.

Offit is by far, the most senior Wall Street trader ever to write a book that discusses and pulls the cover back on how the brokerage firms and hedge funds have, and still do manage to separate people from their money. This is not small-time operators like the “Wolf of Wall Street,” or even Bernie Madoff. Offit’s book is an antidote to his inside view of the best and worst of Wall Street. “It’s a composite of things that were real, and things that could have been real,” he says.

“While I was far from perfect or blameless, I was good at what I did,” Offit confesses, “and loyal to the many people who worked for me, and to the bosses I had who deserved it. I never cheated anyone, and got cheated regularly, which makes me the fool. It’s nothing to be proud of.”

The book’s fast-paced action, and intricate wheeling and dealing, is seen through the eyes of a rising financial star. Warren Hament is bright and athletic, but in college, his tennis was better than his grades. An ex-girlfriend’s father saw his potential and pointed him in the direction of Wall Street. And that’s where the story really begins.

By the end of his first year as a salesman at a “bulge-bracket” investment bank, he’s earning a salary of one-million dollars, with the promise of much more to come, including a gorgeous girlfriend, a beautiful, new apartment on Central Park West, and unexplained murders.

When Warren’s boss and mentor is found murdered, he becomes suspect number one, because in the high-octane, morally corrupt world of investment banking, one man’s death is another’s business opportunity.

When another banker is killed in the middle of an $11 billion deal, Warren finds himself in possession of the dead man’s personal laptop with information leading him to secret bank accounts, but doesn’t solve any murders. Offit saves that surprise for the very end.

With NOTHING PERSONAL, Offit delivers a gripping story filled with complex and cunning characters, unscrupulous corporate behavior, and the insatiable lust for money in a deeply corrupt world.

“In writing the book I really wanted to educate people so that they understand a little bit more about the fundamentals of how banking, investment banking, and the trading world works,” says Offit.

“What’s really at the heart of these things — the complicated formulas that everybody talks about — is making people take on more risk than they want. The business of Wall Street is making money with money. And it really is personal. Every dollar that trades belongs to individuals.

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