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Monkey Business: Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle
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Monkey Business: Swinging Through the Wall Street Jungle

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  3,582 Ratings  ·  121 Reviews
They Hit "The Street." Forget what you've read, forget what you've heard, forget what you've been taught. Monkey Business pulls off Wall Street's suspenders and gives the reader the inside skinny on real life at an investment bank, where the promised land is always one more twenty-hour workday and another lap dance away. "The Street" Hit Back. Fresh out of Wharton and Harv ...more
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Published November 29th 2009 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2000)
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TS Chan
A conversation with some juniors over lunch today reminded me of this book which I've read a long time ago when I landed myself into a front-line banking role. Strangely enough, it was my boss then who loaned this book to me.

A brutally honest and startlingly eye-opening account, I'll recommend any newbie into the investment banking world to read this book. The landscape of investment banking has changed a lot since the Lehman's crash in 2008. But there are enough similarities to be drawn on what
Dec 05, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an incredible book written by 2 Associates who used to work at DLJ back in the day and is the most accurate book I have ever come across for anyone to get a full understanding of what the life of an investment banker consists of. This is one of those books I wish I would have read in college as would have made me even that more excited about what the life was like, but after a few years in the industry, reading it now really allowed me to appreciate everything these guys went through and ...more
Chocoholic Chick
This is an absolutely honest and hilarious look into the lives of Associates in i-banking. I read it while I was an analyst and couldn't stop laughing (poop does roll downhill, trust me). This book is filled with true Wall Street war stories and I highly recommend to anyone who wants a glimpse of that world. If you lived it like I did, you are probably already trying to figure out how to monetize your own experiences :-P
May 02, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
De un tiempo a esta parte me ha dado por los libros de inversiones, bancos y delitos monetarios en general. Quizá sea porque una vez yo estuve a punto de entrar en el negocio de las opciones y futuros, aunque finalmente me quedé como estoy, pobre pero haciendo física.
Este libro narra la historia de dos junior associate bankers (= esclavos) de la empresa DLJ (Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette). Cuando salieron de su MBA en Stanford (¡cuidado, Raquel!) y fueron contratados por una de los mejores ba
Jun 04, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mediocre writing but catchy at times. Definitely should be taken with a grain of salt. It's not that I believe that the stories are grossly inflated, it's that I'd like to believe that there is some goodness in this world and maybe some of that goodness is found among some investment bankers. Otherwise, the read will be thoroughly illuminating and make you realize how terribly bloated, inefficient, and unjustified the whole investment banking domain is.
Matthew Glazer
Jan 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, non-fiction
Really good read. A bit a crude at times but very interesting to get an inside perspective of banking when you're lowest on the totem pole. It was unfortunate that they didn't talk much about WHAT they did, but the culture was interesting.
Jan 31, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read. But the book at times tries to hard to sound scandalous.
Aug 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an entertaining look into the life of post-mba investment banking associates. this book will discourage most people that value some sort of social life from attempting to enter this field despite the outrageous salary packages. I was pretty amused at some of the bawdy aspects of these bankers lives and how they attempt to cope with the long hours (such as trips to strip clubs in the middle of the night). it definitely has demystified and exposed a field which is often painted as glamorou ...more
Kathy Pham
Sep 13, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who wants to get a peak at the world of investment banking
I started reading this book because I was seeing a finance guy at the time, not quite the typical i-banker but stil had no life working for Citigroup. I subsequently was relieved it didn't work out...not sure I ever really want to be involved with an i-banker after reading this...
Austin Gaghadar
Aug 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall a quick, light informative and entertaining read. As someone who had only heard stories of the highs of investment banking before reading this book it was quite an eye opening experience to read a first hand account of the field. Found the book did a good job of providing background information on what exactly one does as an investment banking associate, both in terms of the theoretical job description and the realities of what each aspect of the job practically entailed. Appreciated the ...more
Jorge A.
Sep 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Para cualquier persona que ha trabajado, trabaja actualmente, o quiere trabajar en banca de inversión, léase este libro. Un tono divertido de ver la jerarquía y trabajos dentro de este mundo.
Si bien está pensado en el investment banking norteamericano antes de 2008, hay varios temas extrapolables a lo que es hoy en cualquier parte.
No hay que tomárselo a pecho y reírse de este mundo.
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you want to know about the life of a wall street junior investment banker (pre financial crisis), this is your book. At some places there is a fair bit of exaggeration but perhaps that was required to keep the book interesting..
Jul 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am pleasantly surprised by this book. It has a good mix of humour and insights (albeit a little crude). I would recommend this book to those who are interested in and/or curious about investment banking.
Catherine Wang
Entertaining read. Good for college students who would like to break into banking job. It brought back a lot of bittersweet memories of my two years' analyst life in corporate finance in my early 20s.
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An informative book which gives a good insight into the life of having the coveted job of an investment banker.
Peter Marshall
Jul 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was hilarious. A fun read into the lives of investment bankers' daily struggles and shenanigans.
Michael Massad
Feb 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
John Rolfe and Peter Troob wittily recount their time as investment banking associates on Wall Street. Humorous stories from their birth at Harvard and Wharton into a world of greed and hazing at DLJ. Rolfe and Troob's clever prose adequately explain general banking principles and roasts the whole institution all at the same time. It was funny in a similar way to "I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell" and it had the instructional coherence akin to Michael Lewis books. I would recommend this book to an ...more
Apr 06, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 23, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really entertaining and insightful look into the world of investment banking. Peter Troobe and John Rolfe, graduates of Harvard and Wharton business schools, dish the dirt on their jobs as associates at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, a former Wall Street giant that was later acquired. Monkey Business traces their journey from bright-eyed students dreaming of prestige and big bucks to their eventual disillusioned exit. As associates, their job consists of churning out desired valuat ...more
Dmitry Kuriakov
Feb 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: finance, biography
Одна из лучших книг жанра – «моя жизнь в компании N» – прочитанных мною за последнее время. Я не могу оценить правдивость книги, т.к. никоим образом не касался никогда темы инвестиционного банкинга и слышал о компаниях Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs и пр. только из газеты «Ведомости», но, не смотря на это, авторам удалось написать ясную, понятную и с отменным юмором книгу, для всех кто любит подобный жанр.
Суть книги проста: есть работа, которая приносит очень много денег, но часто это работа, на
Chas Ely
Dec 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Monkey Business was an entertaining yet informative read that shed light on a lot of the cultural problems and nuances in the investment banking industry. At times it was slower and dryer than others, and there were some sections that were more informative than a narrative (since I personally want to have a career in finance these sections were useful and intriguing to me, but to those who are just wanting to hear the cool stories and commentary on the investment banking lifestyle these will pro ...more
Tim O'Hearn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jack Chai
Aug 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I feel lucky when I get this book and read it in a week. All the humiliating and entertaining give me first a laughter and second a deeper thought of what the IB lifestyle would be. What the two authors John and Peter imagined when they got into the DLJ before were quite the same for most college students. From fantasy, a bit of Utopia to depression and frustration, even being crushed and dazed when faced the truth.

What really gives me a shock is how working in the IB inevitably changed their w
Nov 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In their book J.Rolfe and P.Troob described how being an investment banker sucks, all despite huge paychecks and bonuses. The story is definitely a stretch. Almost any job can be described as a terrible and miserable one, the way they did in "Monkey Business". Plus, it won't quite suit your desire if you want to get a comprehensive outlook on the investment banking business, as the book is a bit outdated; events date back to times when pager companies were still on the rise and relatively little ...more
Monkey business is literally the authors' experiences in banking from start to finish. It is a very honest book (be prepared for the one of the final chapters) but I feel like it could have been longer and have dived into why they chose the fields they left banking for. It is very confusing to me that the author's both felt somewhat embarrassed at the time about leaving the banking world (i.e. that they weren't cut out for it) however they both achieved what most people in banking would consider ...more
Aug 04, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: MBA's going into Investment Banking or anyone considering a career in Investment Banking
I read this book last year, per recommendation from a friend as a forewarning of what I was getting myself into shall I decide to pursue a career in Investment Banking. I think his intention was to scare me away from the industry with this book, but I read it, revelled in it and am going to be starting my IB job this fall. I still wanted it, after finishing the book. Some of the recruiters even stole stories from the book.....But seriously, if you ever considered going into IB, please read this ...more
Denis Plotnikov
Dec 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Coming today, Merrill Lynch in Room 1, Booze Allen in Room 2, and Johnson & Johnson in Room 3.”
Subliminally, what was being said was, “Those interested in the big money will head directly to rooms 1 and 2, and anybody with a yen to learn how to market rubber nipples and non–petroleum-based sexual lubricants will kindly report to room 3.”

If you found the citation funny, read the book. This is the funniest work I have ever read. Monkey Business is a rebuttal to corporations with their sugar-c
Shan Kuang
This book is a great illustration of the life of an investment banking analyst ... in the 1990's. DJL is now part of Citigroup and what remains of the team in this novel has largely been absorbed and digested. In 2015, very few bankers will live so wildly as Rolfe and Troob do in their novel.

That being said, this book is a great look into the heydays of banking. It does a great job of fast-tracking the reader through two terrifying years as an investment banking associate. It's a great read for
Tara Young
Oct 12, 2007 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Semi-entertaining book but all in all I kept thinking "cry me a river" i-banker associates as you choose your own career path. Also, sounds like every other job (except most jobs don't require you to stay and make twenty revisions until 4 or 5 AM)in the sense that they both are clearly well educated but were just little peons who spend all their time being tasked to death. But, I alwasy keep in mind this is the perspective of two bright-eyed MBA's straight out of school. Anyway, overall, I wasn' ...more
Jun 17, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Entertaining to hear ex-bankers take on an opaque industry. Learned a little about how over-glorified the profession is. It's no wonder that the financial industry as a whole gets such a bad reputation when there's no value add to 99% of the work that's being done for enormous sums of money.

I'd suggest this book to all those who are thinking about going into investment banking. Oh, also this article would help too.
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“Never try to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and it annoys the pig.” 2 likes
“At the lowest level of the investment banking hierarchy are the analysts. To find this young talent, the I-banks send their manicured young bankers out to the Whartons, Harvards and Princetons of the world to roll out the red carpet for the top undergraduates and begin the process of destroying whatever noble ideals the youngsters have left.” 1 likes
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