Toys R Us was taken over in a debt-loading act of financial engineering in 2005; over the years, despite turning a profit, the service on that debt dragged Toys R Us lower and lower until the management team picked by the financial engineers finally bankrupted the company.
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In 2013, we learned that the world's largest banks had spent years rigging LIBOR, an interest-rate benchmark that served as a linchpin in trillions of dollars' worth of financial instruments, a fraud that could have cost the world $500 trillion
, all to fatten the banks' bottom lines and bankers' pay-packets by paltry millions. In The Spider Network
, Wall Street Journal veteran reporter gives us a novelistic and remarkably easy-to-follow account of one of the most baroque frauds in finance's history, and, in so doing, reveals the rot and mediocrity at the heart of the very financial system.