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Born to Steal: When the Mafia Hit Wall Street
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Born to Steal: When the Mafia Hit Wall Street

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3.33 of 5 stars 3.33  ·  rating details  ·  111 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Shares the inside story of Wall Street's notorious ``chop houses,'' the crooked Mob-run brokerages where rampant thievery netted several billion dollars from gullible investors.
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Published May 1st 2003 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2003)
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Community Reviews

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Kirsti
Do you know the difference between a chop house and a bucket shop? Louis Pasciuto didn't when he started out in the financial industry. A chop house sells stocks at ridiculous markups, while a bucket shop doesn't actually make any stock transactions at all--it just pretends to buy stocks and keeps customers' money. But Louis didn't understand any of this because he was recruited to work at a chop house while he was pumping gas. He was a fast talker who adored making money, and an FBI agent later ...more
Ietrio
Feb 12, 2015 Ietrio rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Nobody
Shelves: junk
I was really curious about the subject. And I've done my best to try to follow this book. But it's beyond me and soon I started turning pages looking for the actual information. That is hidden so deep under mountains of cheap writing and propaganda ideals. Every tiny detail like the guy's jacket has to be wrapped into at least a page of judgemental clichées to make sure the reader gets it: those are the bad, ugly guys and Thought Crime is not allowed. It's interesting to see the castrating Hayes ...more
James
A character study written in the typical journalist's style (e.g. emphasis on Louis not having a conscience, and then describing nothing but conscience near the end). The story describes how an 18 year old gas station attendant became one of the hottest stock brokers in the world of "chop shop" Wall Street. These were brokerages that manipulated the stocks of small companies. They often were the only buyers and sellers of the stock so they could set the price at whatever markups they liked. Acco ...more
Greg Eldred
I thought this book had a great topic. It elaborates on how the Mafia and their figures leach onto firms that are making money, especially shady establishments.

The main character, Louis is a scum bag. Uneducated but a wise talker. He is able to sell clients positions that are worthless time and time again. He creates tremendous wealth with his team of sales people, moving from one fish to the next and never running out of fish to find.

He destroys his life, family and future with the lure of qu
...more
Caroline Borrino
This book gives a very accurate insider's perspective on the illegal conduct that occured at smaller brokerage firms during the 1990's. It is both entertaining and very informative, especially when it details exactly how some of the stock manipulation scams were pulled off.
This is the true story of Staten Island bad boy Louis Pasciuto's meteoric rise to the top of Wall Street's notorious chop houses. The story is the same young guy makes too much money to fast and blows it all on sex, drugs, par
...more
Anandh Sundar
The title was quite misleading-the first half was true that the protaganist was born to steal, but the mafia involvement(as described in the book) was not the main part. Still, the description of the 'boiler shop' was quite lively and realistic, and almost conjured up those images in my mind. The author has given sympathethic treatment to the protaganist right from the preface, but has pulled no punches while critiquing the crime. Good for those with an interest in how boiler shops work-the call ...more
Lea
It was interesting to read. I liked the way it was writen en went very fast through the book
Crystal
Interesting story with plenty of funny parts, but I didn't care for the style of writing.

Also an FYI - the title is misleading. It's really about one guy who worked in a "chop shop" and ends up being under the "protection" of a guy in the mob. Though it does explain some of the ways the mafia was involved with wall street.
Anthony
Good read. Stock manipulation, money, greed, the mafia. And its a true story. Kinda has a boiler room feel. A little Jordan Belfort-esque, before anybody knew who Jorden Belfort was. Not as extreme as the Wolf of Wall Street, but if you liked that book, you should like this one as well.
James
There are a lot of books about crooks on Wall st.
This one is the worst.

It's just one long made up story,
almost everything is unverifiable.

If it was interesting to read, one might call it a novel or non fiction novel,
but it's dead weigh from cover to cover.
Walt
Another excellent study of organized crime activities in a specific industry. The writing is overall good and the author makes a difficult subject/racket understandable to the masses.
Royce
Interesting account of the some Mob activity in the 90s. It's a little too biographical for my taste (it primarily follows the life of one person), but it was interesting.
Malcolm
An unregistered stock broker who defrauded millions from Americans while being extorted by the mafioso.
Neil
great and scary at the same time
Daniel
Aug 13, 2007 Daniel rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people buying stocks
Be wary buying stocks.
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498182
I'm a journalist and author. My next book is AYN RAND NATION: The Hidden Struggle for America's Soul (St. Martin's Press: Feb. 28, 2012).

I was an investigative reporter at BusinessWeek for many years, and I write weekly columns for TheStreet.com and Salon. My previous books were Wall Street Versus America (Portfolio: 2006) and Born to Steal (Warner Books: 2003).

I was a contributing editor
...more
More about Gary Weiss...
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