Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in the Markets and in Life by Nassim Nicholas Taleb


A strongly opinionated book that introduces the world to the importance of understanding randomness and how randomness is playing a role that is far greater than most people are willing to accept. It is one of the most important book of its time showing us how people under estimated risk and and over estimated their ability to handle future uncertainties. A thought provoking book for all traders, especially those who have not ingrained tight risk control in their mindsets yet.

Book Information

Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in the Markets and in Life
Written by Nassim Nicholas Taleb




This book is written with each chapter focus on a particular subject. These subjects are not, however, directly related to each other. Business leaders, gambling roulette, evolution, etc. are not things you choose to talk about within the same book. Yet, using the lens provided by the author, you will see how these topics are in fact important discussions on how randomness is affecting people and the world in a very strange way.

Beware that the author has a strong attitude against economists and quants in general. In fact he has a strong bias against the current dominating economic theories and option models. If you feel offended by the way he jabs at them, then you should calm down, forget everything you have learned about these subjects, and learn from him. After all, he has the right to do so because he is one of the most authoritative figures in the world of financial derivatives.

The good stuff in the book is scattered all over the place as the author was not trying to write a textbook here to teach people how to handle randomness. Hence you have to read the book slowly to learn the concepts along the way. As Mr. Taleb covers so many technical subjects in the book, predominately mathematics and statistics, I find that he has done a great job in avoiding the use of mathematics and formulas.

Overall a good read.

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