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When Markets Collide: Investment Strategies for the Age of Global Economic Change
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When Markets Collide: Investment Strategies for the Age of Global Economic Change

3.50  ·  Rating details ·  690 ratings  ·  46 reviews
"When Markets Collide" is a timely alert to the fundamental changes taking place in today's global economic and financial systems--and a call to action for investors who may fall victim to misinterpreting important signals. While some have tended to view asset class mispricings as mere noise, this compelling book shows why they are important signals of opportunities and ri ...more
Hardcover, 344 pages
Published June 13th 2008 by McGraw-Hill Education (first published 2008)
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3.50  · 
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 ·  690 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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Jul 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Mohamed El-Erian has both the private sector and public sector experience as he worked at the IMF, for the Harvard Endowment and Pimco. That is a unique set of experience that he leverages in this book to take both an investor and a policy maker point of view.

He starts providing his "proprietary tool" to identify turning point in the market:
- Observe noises
- Identify the source of the noise that creates an unusual market dislocation
- Be disciplined in treating each episode of such noise as poten
Jan 21, 2009 rated it liked it
Mohamed El-Erian has attempted to put together his vast knowledge of the global economy and markets into this relatively light and easy to read guide for investors and scholars alike. His insights into the changing nature of the global economy make this a must read for those who are interested in international finance and global economics, but may have not kept up with some of the more nuanced news in the past few years. While most of the knowledge in the book can be gleaned from careful reading ...more
Wael Alghamdi
May 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
For ordinary people who wish to understand the global financial crisis that hit the world in 2008
Aug 04, 2018 rated it liked it
Timing matters when publishing financial concept books. Published as the economy was collapsing in 2008, most of El-Erian's descriptions and prescriptions seem dated. As an investor based in the US, I can appreciate his chapter on analyzing and investing in emerging economies. Besides that and the mention of tail insurance, most of the book is forgettable. I wonder if later editions removed all of the references to his former boss, Bill Gross.
Nov 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
This is one of the most frustrating books for me. My expectations was way better but the book is quite an unpleasant read -I think- unless you're a fund manager or on your way to become one. The language is complicated in an unneeded way, and the ideas in the book could have been covered in way less number of pages.
Mehdi Lebbar
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Excellently written. Insightful: Full of frameworks to understand the global economy. Started to age a bit but actually extremely accurate in its predictions of our time. Also interesting if you think a global crisis could happen again: what conditions apply?
Heidi Foster
Oct 29, 2018 rated it liked it
I enjoyed seeing what Mohamed El-Erian was looking at in the markets right before the Great Recession, although I don't think this book held the answers that I had hoped it would.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was ok
finally finished this book, was tough to read actually, didn't flow, and not a page turner.
Oct 13, 2008 rated it liked it
El-Erian is probably one of the smartest 100 guys in the investing world and, while that world has changed alot in the months since this was first published, he is prescient about alot of what has happened since then, and there are many insights buried within this tome. Unfortunately, El-Erian's writing style, like much financial writing, is dull, bordering on unreadable, complicated by his unfortunate tendency to want to kiss the rear end of every major figure in the financial world, like El-Er ...more
Sep 29, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Written a good year ahead of the financial crash, this investment guide is spot on. There are two modest criticisms which are barely worth mentioning. The book came out ahead of the crash so some parts may need to be updated or amended (like recommending bond investors check values against a Lehman Index). Secondly, there is some modest horn tooting -- El-Erian did acquit himself at the IMF, PIMCO and the Harvard Endowment Fund before he was lured back to PIMCO -- but he deserves all the accolad ...more
Sep 10, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: economics
El-Erian's book is a good overall read and is recommended. However, those looking for all the answers to be laid out are bound to be disappointed. Nevertheless El-Erian excels in laying out the key thematic moves and guideposts for investors to look for - but leaves the reader to do much hard work. But as recently pointed out: “Nothing in life that’s worth anything is easy.” (Sergeant First Class Cory Remsburg)

The first half of the book starts strongly. In particular, El-Erian excels at outlinin
Chun Wo Chow
Jan 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
El-Erian snapshotted the happenings of financial market meltdown in 2007-2008 and illustrated the cause-and-effects with his in-depth knowledge in macroeconomics principles, modern portfolio theory, empirical studies on assets allocation, neuroscience, and behavioural finance.

This book is akin to textbook/academic essay. Not an easy read, yet I (gladly) picked up several more jargons, e.g. “The Market for Lemons” and "virtuous circle and vicious circle".

Notwithstanding that S&P 500 tripled
Jul 25, 2010 rated it liked it
Quite good. El-Erian is the head of PIMCO and the equal of one of the greatest money men to ever live - bond king Bill Gross. He has an interesting discussion of the old paradigm of US-centric markets and the emergence of a multi-polar world, along with a neat emphasis on the importance of policy makers considering moral hazard. I was a bit suspicious of his enthusiastic description of many emerging markets (China is definitely not as transparent and easy as he makes it sound). Interesting point ...more
Sep 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Mohamed El-Erian main argument is that the International Financial System is progressing towards new territories and that market participants, including policy makers as well as investors, must plan for a long journey towards a destination that is not yet well define.

As explained in his acknowledgements, the author took his ideas largely from his extensive professional activities, personal discussions and his academic life. This gives this book a depth that help us navigate through the subje
Jul 31, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: finance-business
Pimco's Mohammed El-Erian's book on why we need a 'new normal' because of major changes happening in financial landscape and the (in-)ability of the players to cope with and factor in these changes in their decisions...a little technical, insights which no one will disagree with but written in a boring way. As far as the style of writing an engaging book is concerned, Mr El Erian has a long way to go!
Aug 10, 2012 rated it it was ok
More interconnectedness of markets - Emerging markets outside of the US are becoming a bigger and bigger part of global markets (SWF and emerging market growth)

Importance of risk management and mitigation - Tail risk is avoided by investors because of the prinicpal / agent problem of "negative carry" for insurance

Portfolio Manager pschology cycle - arete (excellence) --> hubris (excessive pride) --> ate (blind recklessness) --> nemesis (retributive justice)
Sep 08, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfic
Mohamed El-Erian has had a fascinating and varied career in finance, working for the IMF, a big Wall Street firm, Harvard's endowment and the biggest bond fund manager in the world, PIMCO. But his book is just boring, boring, boring. Other savvy and sophisticated investors like Yale endowment chief David Swanson have written much more useful and accessible books for investors. El-Erian is too caught up with jargon and generalities. I had expected more. Oh well.
Alberto Lopez
Jul 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
No doubt that Mr. El-Erian is one of the smartest economists in the world. This book is fantastic, although a bit deep for anyone not intimate with economic or financial terms. Mr. El-Erian describes a great way to understand the divergence of key macro indicators such as volatility, equities and bonds during times of change. This book is also a great compliment to "The Black Swan" by Nassim Taleb.
Jul 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
This is one of the better investment books I've read in a long time, but don't expect explicit directions about where to put your money. El Arian is great communicator of big picture themes, and this book shares his thoughts on where the world economy is heading over a multi-decade time period. Breezy at times, and not necessarily anything that someone who reads the business section everyday wouldn't know, but he does a great job of using everyday analogies to convey his message.
Jul 15, 2008 rated it liked it
I had high expectations for this book - El Erian is an investment genius - but I have to admit, I found it disappointing. He takes a long, hard look at market structure, and while these insights are both original and important, they don't really apply to the little guy's portfolio. As is usual for these sorts of books, the title promises more bang than the book delivers.
Sep 01, 2008 rated it liked it
I have known of this book for a while. I then heard it panned by KSL 102.7. I got a chuckle that they would review this book (same reviewer for the vampire series etc). I thought the book made some great points and arguments, but it did not have some of the structure and formality I was expecting. A lot of typos.
John Hibbs
Jan 16, 2009 rated it really liked it
Good book that provides excellent analysis of seeds of current economic crisis. Other parts of book I did not find so interesting.
This is not for the faint of heart. If you don't have a basic understanding of credit markets, economics and financial derivatives don't bother. Start reading the Finance and Economics section of the Economist instead.

Jan 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book is written one year before the financial meltdown. Mohamed El-Erian is using an eclectic approach to explain why markets collide. Good analysis, brilliant language, one of the best that I've read ever.
Brian G. Murphy
Nov 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finance
A guide to navigating the ever more important (and dangerous) global macro environment. Prior to reading, I regarded Bill Gross to be Pimco’s top investor. El-Erian is equally impressive, if not more.
Apr 15, 2010 rated it liked it
basically....invest in emerging markets? feels accessible while reading, then realized i retained very little. would go back to eventually, is interesting and well presented, but not right for right now!
Jul 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
A good read for those wanting some insight into what to expect in the coming years; however, many of Mr. El-Erian's points were vague. The book could have been condensed and filled with more solid writing.
Mar 17, 2009 rated it really liked it
A little over my head so I had to go through the book slowly- but stretching is always healthy. However I am sure that for people who work in the investment field it will not be too difficult.

I loved the listening for signals in the noise advice!
Apr 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
I really enjoy the way El-Erian can reduce even the most complex financial topics down to simple lists and analogies. He is a great live speaker, whether it be on CNBC or in the boardroom, and this translates completely into his writing.
Dude-von Dudenstein
there book starts out great but then goes off track with the mention of IMF and HMC (which truthfully is not the most interesting fund) Lot of content is obsolete with sovereign debt crisis happening after the book.
Someone bought this for me. I read over half and then just couldn't do it anymore. The whole thing was lost on me. I had no idea what the point was and I couldn't shake the feeling my time would be better spent on a something else.
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Dr. Mohamed A. El-Erian is the CEO and co-CIO of PIMCO, a global investment management firm and one of the world’s largest bond investors with approximately US$1.2 trillion of assets under management at the end of 2010.

In his capacity as CEO, El-Erian is responsible for setting the strategic direction of the firm and leading its operations globally. As co-CIO, and together with PIMCO co-founder Bi