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Rigged: The True Story of an Ivy League Kid Who Changed the World of Oil, from Wall Street to Dubai

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  2,719 ratings  ·  202 reviews
From the author who brought you the massive New York Times bestseller Bringing Down the House, this is the startling rags-to-riches story of an Italian-American kid from the streets of Brooklyn who claws his way into the wild, frenetic world of the oil exchange.

After conquering the hallowed halls of Harvard Business School, he enters the testosterone-laced warrens of the M
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 23rd 2007 by William Morrow (first published October 1st 2007)
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Average rating 3.64  · 
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 ·  2,719 ratings  ·  202 reviews

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Start your review of Rigged: The True Story of an Ivy League Kid Who Changed the World of Oil, from Wall Street to Dubai
Sharon Beers
Feb 17, 2016 rated it liked it
Street smart kid from Brooklyn and then Harvard enters the wild and woolly world of the Merc Exchange (with his bible of Milton Friedman's creed under his arm) where billions of dollars change hands every week and fistfights occur on the storied trading floor. His journey from there encompasses palaces and back alleys while he endeavors to conquer the oil trading world. He helps establish the Dubai Mercantile Exchange while also dancing with, and away from, dangerous Middle East contacts. Publis ...more
Aug 31, 2008 rated it liked it
The sales pitch on this book caught my eye cause I used to intern at a commodities trading company after my sophmore year in college, so I was curious to learn more about commodities trading.

The book itself was well written, but lacked a little more excitement. Though I burned through the book in a week, it didn't have quite the excitement as I felt reading Monkey Business (About Ibanking) or Liars Poker (Securities Trading).

I did learn some cool things about what effects energy prices and from
Nov 23, 2007 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: peoplo who like hearing about other people's sexy jobs
The book is more promise than delivery. Mezrich writes in an interesting style, but at bottom, I don't really believe what the protagonist accomplished actually will change the world. On the other hand, all things Dubai really are pretty fascinating, so the book wasn't all bad, either.
Aug 09, 2008 rated it really liked it
This is really a terrific story. It's certainly plausible, if only just. Giving it the benefit of the doubt that it's more fact than fiction is fairly, but if you can swallow your disbelief, it obviously makes the tale just that much more fascinating.

Lauren Marie
Nov 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
3.5 stars
Saidi Mdala
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
Rigged: Ben Mezrich

So six hours later – two sittings – I put down Rigged. Dusted! I am absolutely stunned by the excursion I have just taken. From a club in Manhattan at three-thirty in the ungodly hours of the day, to Merrill Lynch floors the next day (six months earlier), and a few weeks later we are at the Mercantile Stock Exchange in Chicago, and then in a dramatic twist of events to Dubai (oh Dubai, a whole world where every place and culture on the continent is amply represented – perhaps
Steven Kaminski
May 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Pretty compelling book that looks at the NYMEX (New York Mercantile Exchange) that has contracts for most of the oil that travels through the world. Through the eyes of David Russo who was hired right out of business school he eventually becomes a vice president for the exchange. He also and this is where it gets bold coordinates with a government official to set up an exchange in Dubai closer to where the actual oil is. Through his eyes you can see where the business is shifting and why Dubai i ...more
Dec 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
In the acknowledgements, Ben Mezrich claims that this is the best book he has ever written. I would not agree as I enjoyed some of his other books more, such as "Bringing Down the House: The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions," which was made into the movie, "21," and "The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook: A Tale of Sex, Money, Genius and Betrayal," which was made into a movie as well ("The Social Network").

Mezrich has a niche in nonfiction: his books
Sasha Kurup
Jun 23, 2016 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brent Soderstrum
Aug 27, 2008 rated it really liked it
A true story about a young Ivy league kid who goes to work on the New York Mercantile Exchange. He then is instrumental in setting up an Exchange in Dubai. I learned a lot about the Mercantile Exchange. The only thing I knew about it before reading this book was from the movie Trading Places. Seems to be a sophisticated casino. Also learned about Dubai. Sadly enough I knew only that it was in the Mideast. Sounds like an incredible place that will be very trendy and popular in the years to come. ...more
Jan 28, 2008 rated it liked it
The oil exchange is a fascinating topic I knew nothing about, but that didn't seem to matter. The entertainment value that Mezrich puts into his books is what makes them...even though the ending of this one was a little ho hum. This book tells the rags to riches story of a bunch of guys from Queens & Brooklyn who make it big trading oil on the Merc Exchange in NYC, specifically following main character David Russo, a guy in his early 20's who helps develop an oil exchange in Dubai by seducing sk ...more
Picked this up on my way home for Thanksgiving and finished it before I landed. It's about this bright kid who got his MBA from Harvard and somehow found himself as the VP for Strategy at the New York Merchantile Exchange a few months later. He teamed up with a counterpart in Dubai to create an Oil Exchange, the first of its kind in the Middle East. The exchange is suppossed to bring transparency and accountability to middle-eastern oil prices which could have HUGE implications for global stabil ...more
Enjoyable read - gave it 4 stars because it sucked me in quickly, read like beach blanket fiction and made the industry that I work in completely accessible to anyone. And considering they have sold the movie rights to it, I suspect people who are NOT in my industry would enjoy the true story as well. It basically had the rags to riches theme, along with the underdog vs the establishment theme, along with the sex and money and intrigue themes that capture the imagination and get the blood racing ...more
Jan 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
"Rigged" follows the same non-fiction novel style as "Ugly Americans" and "Bringing Down the House". The book tells the story of a recent Harvard grad and his start at the New York Mercantile Exchange and focuses on the trading of oil. The title is a little misleading as it implies some sort of indictment of big oil or some other conspiracy.

Overall an enterntaining read that goes by pretty quickly. I've you've read his other books and enjoyed them - you'll like this as well.
Dec 18, 2008 rated it did not like it
ignorant, inappropriate in every way -- particularly in his portrayal and treatment of women and any culture other than w-h-i-t-e. Absurd. Let me count the number of times he referred to the "brown" or "chocolate" hands of the Khaled character. It was shockingly ignorant, given how much press it got.
Of course, the plot also drags you along the whole time, so you grit through it just to see what happens.

so wrong.
Jon Samuelson
Dec 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: any guy
This author is awesome. I love everything he does, terrific non-fiction. Read this in 4 days. Very interesting and I do not even like anything having to do with financial trading, or oil. But that is what this is about bringing an exchange to the country of Dubai. True story, with names changed.
Sep 03, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good, well-written book. Overall, a fast read. Beginning is a little slow if you know anything about the Wall St/ trading world since he breaks it down and explains the basics. But interesting- a true story about this guy who changed the NYMEX and its role in the global marketplace when he was 25 yrs old or something ridiculous.
Eric Smith
Mar 20, 2011 rated it did not like it
I enjoyed this author's other books previously, and was curious to read this one since I went to school with John D'Agostino - but this book is terrible. When I got to the end, I thought there had been a mistake because nothing interesting or worthy of writing a book about had happened, so I assumed it was just build up... and then the thing ends.
Will W
Dec 20, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Fast and fun, Mizrich does it again. The kind of shit this guy pulls off makes me think of some of the students at Davis High. Some people are simply on a different level intellectually. Different level? Different planet.
Jan 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
This book is focused on the inner workings of the commodities exchange in New York. It is a pretty interesting read, and very quick! Very good for those working in FS or interested in the corrupt nature of America.
Lewis de Seife
Mar 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Very engaging exploits of Dave Russo, an HBS graduate, and his role in getting NYMEX to start an oil exchange in Dubai.

Not a lot of insights into the workings of the NYMEX, but more of a story about a driven Brooklyn Italian American and how he overcame long odds to get the project approved.
Apr 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
Very fast read. I enjoyed learning a little bit about Dubai and the massive growth that is happening. Interesting to note the reluctance to move from old school to new tech by some and the advocacy of others. If you liked Bringing Down the House, you'll like this. Can be read in about 3 hours.
Sep 02, 2008 rated it it was amazing
This is my second book by Ben Mezrich and I've found his style of writing to be very engaging. This was a very interesting read about the birth of the Dubai Mercantile Exchange and how a guy my age defied age barriers to make this new marketplace a reality.
Sep 16, 2008 rated it really liked it
My husband actually picked this book out for me and at first glance I was not impressed...but to not judge a book by(you know the rest)......was greatly intrigued by the world of oil exchange and the up and coming Dubai
Beth W
Aug 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Fascinating and engaging. Written by the guy who wrote book the movie "21" was based on. Wonder what impact the ways of the merc has on today's gas price horror.
Dec 06, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was a fun, energizing read - but I liked Bringing Down the House better. Rigged runs against those same lines - youth, power, speed, and money.
Dec 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Interesting read on the oil business and the creation of the Dubai Mercantile Exchange. I didn't want this book to end and want to see the movie now.
Jan 06, 2009 rated it did not like it
This book was just terrible.
Feb 02, 2010 rated it liked it
As far as I am concerned, this book is the best book that Mezrich has written. Not only does it deal with geopolitical issues through the vehicle of business, but it also beautifully describes the essence of why traders do what they do.

When I thought of high-finance I always thought it was boring, but after reading this book I understand why people who are competitive do it. At its very essence, high-finance is about WINNING and the EGO-BOOST that one gets as the result of doing something that
Lord Zion
Jun 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's a biography of sorts so read like fiction. I'm not a fan of reading fiction (so don't very often) and it took me a while to slip into that way of story telling. Not sure someone without an interest in the markets would enjoy it, but I did.
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