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Friday, February 12, 2021

Friday Feature Book Review: "Gods of Greenwich" : Norb Vonnegut (Hedge Fund Mystery!) トップ・プロデューサー ウォール街の殺人 (ヘッジファンドのミステリー!) ノーブ ヴォネガット

Money & murder work well together in this hedge fund mix. I am always looking for a good fast-paced financial thriller and this was it. When possible,  I also prefer to read about finance, but rarely expect direct exposure to the hedge fund world or its High Net Worth lifestyle trappings. There is plenty of luxury eye candy woven into this story. I get the feeling that Norb, is able to bring to finance, what John Grisham, has brought to many lawyers and the legal profession.


America's hedge fund center "Hedgistan" is the main location in Greenwich, Connecticut. It is just outside New York, and this book did not disappoint. It is fiction, but reads like a very realistic documentary. You very much get a sense that Wall Street can be seen in two very complimentary locations, Manhattan and Greenwich. You can even see them as 2 sides of the same coin. One buy side and one sell side perhaps. Every detail rings true, and nothing seems fake.

Cy Leeser, the hedge fund manager with the "secret sauce" has everything including Bianca Santiago, the beautiful Brazilian trophy wife. Picasso paintings, and a vast sprawling Greenwich estate. It is so large in size that I would not want to clean it. The plot is based around hero Jimmy Cusack, the hero and underdog taking on the buy side's big time players. 

He is caught in a post-Lehman & pre-Iceland crisis, that many can relate to. Coming from the Boston area, not New York, he still made it into Goldman Sachs. No easy task as it was the pinnacle of investment banking at that time, and then moves on to his own hedge fund, sweet. However, every good deed does not go unpunished, as we learn in this book, such is life in finance.

Jimmy is somebody who has one financial strike against him and brothers in the military who did not share his financial career path. There were so many bells and whistles that were spot on, I lost count. In fact, it was the details that the author Norb Vonnegut (yes related to Kurt), uses that click everything in place. Everything seems believable are very realistic when I think of similar hedge fund types I know in the area.

The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that impact any reader are:


1) There is a lot to learn about how to succeed within a hedge fund. At the very core though, it is about making money. Those who figure out the "secret sauce" survive long term or die trying.

2) The more of this book you read, the more you wonder how much the world of finance can cover. Where does it end? and how much wider does it cover in ways you do not see today.

3) Becoming successful in a hedge fund is never easy, but can sometimes appear to be to outsiders. There is often a reason, and that reason is often a key rare talent that is hard to replicate.

Norb does have a Harvard MBA, and did work at top investment banks. This is key to what makes this story work, because it feels so real. These insights are used so well, in the right amount, that he kept me engaged for much longer than I should have ever been. Annuities are about people's lives, but only for their lifetime. There is a blood thirsty innovation on this theme that I certainly have never seen. I could not put it down and that is always a good sign. If you like money, art and "killer sex", you will be changed with this read. Highly recommended!


Please visit us for our Friday Feature Review where TMJ Partners will review books, movies, services and anything else with a financial theme. Follow us now for our free weekly updates, just click hereThank you for reading and learning more about how money is made in finance!

If you are interested in Sales & Trading, Banking or FinTech focused roles in Asia or Japan then click here. Follow TMJ Partners on Linkedin Instagram or TwitterWe are the world's #1 recruiter on Twitter, with over 40,000+ followers globally! click here! 

あなたアジア日本セールストレーディング,
バンキング、フィンテックの役割に興味がある場合は、こちらをクリックしてくださいティエムジェィパートナーズLinkedin Instagram またはTwitterでフォローしてください 世界中のTwitter第1位リクルーター40,000以上のフォロワー既に持っています!クリックしてください

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

Tokyo                                          Tokyo

      Mark  Pink                               Shinichi Nagasawa
Direct + 81 3 3505 3891              Direct + 81 3 3505 3891

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Friday Feature Book Review: “How to Become a Rainmaker” by Jeffrey J. Fox めざせ!レインメーカー! : ジェフリー・J・フォックス


Many can open, but few can close. Are you a closer? If not, do you want to be? If you want to perform in any business at a higher level, this book will help. How do Investment Bankers find M&A deals? How do FinTech investors keep finding start-up winners? Why do top tier Asset Managers continually find strong returns? You will increase your business relationship skills with top client prospects no matter what the area. Results count in a "show me the money" world today. Luckily, this book show the way to bigger better P/L results very clearly.


If continuous self-driven improvement is what drives you, then you will also understand that you never know enough for very long. There is always something new, and always something to adapt to. That seems to be a key point for more profits in a fast moving business world. If you are not growing and getting better, you are slowing down, and maybe shrinking.

Being a Rainmaker is a mindset. You wake up and go to sleep 6+ days a week thinking about revenue for clients. This is not a curse, it is a vocation. How to find new clients, how to help old ones, and how to increase revenues from existing clients is a constant sub channel of your mind. Client thoughts are always going on in the background. How can a Rainmaker think of ways to improve a client's businesses, and ultimately one's own? This is what drives a Rainmaker every day. 

This way or living & working often requires long term thinking and perspective, but needs to made clear in a short term results environment. Sadly, it confirms that you are only as good as your last deal, your last close, your last impact on a client's business in added value. You have to keep reinventing what you see in any market. Give before you take. If you do not plant many seeds constantly, you will not benefit from the few deals that may come about as a result.

If you share this "long term greedy" outlook, and are driven to review solid productive business habits, then this book is for you. Rainmaking closers want to add to a bottom line everyday, and this is a worthwhile investment of time for that. Anybody successful will recognize some of the habits inside right away, but never all of them. Even if you find one new tip to improve your performance, it is time and money well spent. This book is a true investment in your career. It is a great review and client skill reminder for any level in your career. 


The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that really impact any reader are:

1) There is a lot to learn about how to be successful with clients. It is about giving first, and taking second. Rainmakers are often "long-term greedy".

2) The best Rainmakers know how to close yet evolve. They keep doing what they do best, but keep a constant ability to adapt to new trends and changes in their market.

3) Becoming a successful closer, a true Rainmaker is never fast or easy, but can sometimes appear to be, to outsiders. There is often a reason, and that reason is often a key rare talent, mixed with hard work that is never easy to replicate.



This book is for any closer to keep a profitable career going strong. In fact, it is this discovery of something new or forgotten, that may spark a new angle on a deal or opportunity, and makes this book worthwhile. Perfect for a short flight, but make sure a note pad is ready for the new ideas that this creates! Highly recommended for any level in your business career. In January 2015, a re-release of this great book came out with even better updated material. It is available in Japanese and other languages. Highly recommended!

Please visit us for our Friday Feature Review where TMJ Partners will review books, movies, services and anything else with a financial theme. Follow us now for our free weekly updates, just click hereThank you for reading and learning more about how money is made in finance!

If you are interested in Sales & Trading, Banking or FinTech focused roles in Asia or Japan then click here. Follow TMJ Partners on Linkedin Instagram or TwitterWe are the world's #1 recruiter on Twitter, with over 40,000+ followers globally! click here! 

あなたアジア日本セールストレーディング,
バンキング、フィンテックの役割に興味がある場合は、こちらをクリックしてくださいティエムジェィパートナーズLinkedin Instagram またはTwitterでフォローしてください 世界中のTwitter第1位リクルーター40,000以上のフォロワー既に持っています!クリックしてください

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

Tokyo                                          Tokyo

      Mark  Pink                               Shinichi Nagasawa
Direct + 81 3 3505 3891              Direct + 81 3 3505 3891

Friday, January 29, 2021

Friday Feature Book Review: The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene 権力に翻弄されないための48の法則 上 : ロバート グリーン

Without question, The 48 laws of Power reads like a secret list of tips on "how to be an MD in an investment bank, a PM in a hedge fund, or a top performer in any other financial firm". It is really good meaty stuff, rock solid in fact. The kind of stuff so valuable, only a close friend or family member would ever share it with you.


In many ways, I would describe these modern rules as very Machiavellian and perfect for the world of finance today. These are timeless markers for any career path. They seem both practical and essential for any young or mid-level executive's future high powered career. If you have ambition, then this is your secret road map for the "insider rules of success". Learn them all well. 

I have many favorites, but the first of note is #1 never outshine the master. I cannot tell you how many times, some new junior dealer tries to impress the MD, with his new higher level skills. Within a short time, he is transferred to another desk or fired with no understanding as to why.

Another great one touches on the truth, and how useless it may be. Again young people feel that if they are right, they can get ahead. However rule #9 Win through your actions, never through argument, is worth noting. If some MD says you cannot make money from that client, do not argue.  Just focus, book the P/L, show the P/L and explain that "something has changed", so now the firm is able to deal with the client again. No blame or argument takes place, only an adjustment of the situation.

I was very impressed with one VP who soon became an MD. He valued rule #18 Do not build Fortresses to protect Yourself- Isolation is Dangerous. He told me that even though he did not smoke, he took smoking breaks, and chatted with other senior in the smoking room. In fact, one of the biggest deals he ever closed was a result of one of those conversations. He heard something he never would have heard before, and he acted on it and closed a major deal for the firm. Information only flows when it is shared. A person alone shares very little and does not often succeed.

If you are smart and know the answer, never give it out too early. Rule #37 Master the Art of Timing, is key. When inside any tough situation, if you know how to exit or source a solution, let others around you or above you feel the pressure. Once you sense that an end is near or the firm may need to give up on any opportunity, that is the best time to offer the solution everyone needs. Two impressions will be made, not only that you could find the solution, but that you could find it "just in time". The fact that you had it ready previously would have been wasted when bonus time arrives.

I am surprised by some in finance who discredit "politicians" as useless in a firm. Rule #43 Work on the Hearts and Minds of Others, is very important. Any bonus often needs to be decided on my a number of people, never one, if it is big. All of those who would determine your bonus need to be understood and appealed to. There is no such thing as "the right amount" for anybody, no bonus number is "fair". The more you can be approved by those around you, who value your contribution, the more likely that bonus your will be larger. 

The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that really impact any reader are:

1) There is a lot to learn about how to succeed within any organization, financial or otherwise. IQ is not EQ, and this book underlines many of the "soft skill points" too many promising people overlook, that hold them back.

2) The more of these rules you read, the more you think that a better title for this book may be, "how not to waste your time on things that do not help your career, only hurt it, and keep your high compensation delayed."

3) Becoming successful is not simple or quick. There is no easy action that can save your career instantly. The road is long and takes time, and is full of possible dangers. It is best to be cautious with your career.


A final note that ensures a fat bonus from your MD or senior management is #46, Never appear too perfect. Envy from others is to be avoided. It is best to create a foolish vice or weakness, even if it is not true. It make others who judge you to relax. It can be anything such as disco music from the 1970s, or being a Superman comic book fan. Having something, anything even minor and superficial, that others around you can be aware of, allows you to be accepted as human, and worth the big bucks! Highly recommended, without question.


Please visit us for our Friday Feature Review where TMJ Partners will review books, movies, services and anything else with a financial theme. Follow us now for our free weekly updates, just click hereThank you for reading and learning more about how money is made in finance!

If you are interested in Sales & Trading, Banking or FinTech focused roles in Asia or Japan then click here. Follow TMJ Partners on Linkedin Instagram or TwitterWe are the world's #1 recruiter on Twitter, with over 40,000+ followers globally! click here! 

あなたアジア日本セールストレーディング,
バンキング、フィンテックの役割に興味がある場合は、こちらをクリックしてくださいティエムジェィパートナーズLinkedin Instagram またはTwitterでフォローしてください 世界中のTwitter第1位リクルーター40,000以上のフォロワー既に持っています!クリックしてください

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

Tokyo                                          Tokyo

      Mark  Pink                               Shinichi Nagasawa
Direct + 81 3 3505 3891              Direct + 81 3 3505 3891

Friday, January 22, 2021

Friday Feature Book Review: The Whims of Fortune (Billionaire Memoirs) by Guy de Rothschild ロスチャイルド自伝!(億万長者の回顧録) ギー・ド ロスチャイルド

These billionaire memoirs by the late Guy de Rothschild do not disappoint. His famous family, the Rothschilds, perhaps the richest family in the world, is full of history. The original German founder in the 1760s, asked his sons, the core five Rothschild brothers, to build the very first multi-national bank in Europe. The 5 arrows in various coats of arms and symbols are represented by the family motto of being industrious, certainly has been true.


This innovative Jewish family were the first to fully execute a cross border letter of credit. They continued to have had strong banking DNA that passed on well across the generations. Guy took over the bank's direction in Paris, and stretched it further to New York and the US market. Although a later generation, I see him as a key sixth member of the family to expand the firm's reach and making them truly global in ability. 

Although personal memoirs, are the perfect window into a Ultra High Net Worth family, they have great business balance to them as well. The glamorous lifestyle of the 1% is all here. The race horses, French chateau properties, hunting & shooting weekends, support for the arts, and a long list of galas full of celebrities are all well documented here. The Bordeaux wine of great fame, Chateau Mouton Rothschild, owned by the family for over 100 years, has always helped spread the fame of the family's wealth & prestige globally.

What is most surprising to the reader though, may be Guy's military career during World War Two. He seems to have been very happy to be a simple soldier and came out well, once tested in battle. He was given a medal for his valor and got recognized by General Charles de Gaulle. The circle of life recrossed again when both paths after de Gaulle became head of state. 

Another clear connection is a politician who started out as a manager within the Rothschild bank in Paris, Georges Pompidou. A brilliant man of high EQ (emotional intelligence) not just high IQ, he later replaced de Gaulle as the president of France. Maria Callas, Coco Chanel, and even Salvador Dali, was a famous artist of the time all feature here. They were often at the same parties with George and Guy. Queen Elizabeth, and her love of horses also make an appearance in this memoir full of many varied and rich slices of life. Some of these parties have been legendary and discussed as part of the illuminati crowd. The bizarre dress at one of those remarkable events held at a the family castle, even inspired a scene from "Eyes Wide Shut" starring Tom Cruise,  can only be described visually as Dali-esque!

The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that impact any reader are:

1) There is a clear intermingling with multi-generational HNWI families and their wealth and politics. Wealth is about any decent return of capital learned by family members internally!

2) The Rothschilds are not technically aristocrats within British society, has they have not survived as English nobles for 500+ years.

3) Keeping strong economically after initial financial success has never been easy. It takes skill for families to continue past many generations. The Rothschilds have always found a way for over 250+ years.

How this key individual Guy de Rothschild, criss-crossed among politicians, statesman, celebrities, businessmen, and the world of horse racing is fascinating. The very revealing and open access to one of the world's wealthiest families is a pleasant surprise. It also leaves any reader with a great satisfaction into a life well lived and fully enjoyed. Highly recommended, without question.


Please visit us for our Friday Feature Review where TMJ Partners will review books, movies, services and anything else with a financial theme. Follow us now for our free weekly updates, just click hereThank you for reading and learning more about how money is made in finance!

If you are interested in Sales & Trading, Banking or FinTech focused roles in Asia or Japan then click here. Follow TMJ Partners on Linkedin Instagram or TwitterWe are the world's #1 recruiter on Twitter, with over 40,000+ followers globally! click here! 

あなたアジア日本セールストレーディング,
バンキング、フィンテックの役割に興味がある場合は、こちらをクリックしてくださいティエムジェィパートナーズLinkedin Instagram またはTwitterでフォローしてください 世界中のTwitter第1位リクルーター40,000以上のフォロワー既に持っています!クリックしてください

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

Tokyo                                          Tokyo

      Mark  Pink                               Shinichi Nagasawa
Direct + 81 3 3505 3891              Direct + 81 3 3505 3891

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Friday Feature Book Review: Soros on Soros: Staying Ahead of the Curve by George Soros ジョージ・ソロス : デリバティブのマジシャン、投資理論、経営哲学: ジョージ・ソロス

George Soros, has a lot of say that is worth reading about. This is really 3 books in one. The first section is about trading, and is called "Investing and Global Finance". The second section is about politics and is called "Geopolitics, Philanthropy, and Global Change". The third section is about  "Philosophy" and includes his personal one he called "reflexivity". Most readers focus on the first section, but that seems to be a bit short sighted. George Soros only started trading the Quantum Fund in his 40s. He was already a well formed financier, and it is his foundation of ideas that made him stand out. I will concentrate on this first section as it is the most financial in its flavor within this review.


To hope that you could read "a few good tips" on how to do better trading, and then make billions like him, would be a poor use of time. If anybody is motivated to make really big trades, and learn the edge needed to make mega profits, the bigger picture of the man is needed. Every trader has areas they excel at, and George Soros, was no exception. Like a surfer, he needed a very big wave to show his conviction and really impress. Others could be impressive with smaller waves in more regular numbers, but that is not what he did best. George Soros, was always about the mega trade. He was ultimately an "elephant hunter" in the financial markets. It was never about a preferred type of trade, but more of a window of timing matched with size that really set George Soros, apart of many others of his hedge fund trading generation. To get a full flavor of what it takes to be a trader of his class and stature, I would read all 3 sections of the book. This will help give a much wider perspective of the man, and therefore the person you need to be, to repeat his level of success.


This is in great contrast to his own insecurity about how wrong he could be about recognizing any big wave of opportunity in a trade. He always knew he could be wrong, and put on a big trade in size, with this knowledge. He may have had conviction, but he also always admitted that timing could change and force him to exit a trade quickly. This could be the case even if 24 hours before, he was full of conviction. Many traders in the market do not have this mental attitude. Too many traders often "get married" to an individual trade or a single position, and then "hope" it will change back into a profitable outcome when it goes negative early on. George Soros, never got married to any single position. It sets him apart mentally from 99% of most financial traders and risk takers in the market.

Another rare factor about the trading style preferences of George Soros was actually, his lack of style. Unlike many hedge fund traders who had a usual or signature trade or strategy, George Soros, never had a single one to call his own. It reminds me of a quote by Bruce Lee, "be like water, if water is in a cup, you are the cup" that kind of thing. Part of the strength that George Soros had in regard to strategy was a lack of one that was a clear pattern. Size and conviction appeal was the only true pattern that he would often follow. Equities, FX, Credit or Fixed Income never really attracted him "per se" It was the size potential of any single trade, not the actual type or strategy.

The Top 3 Takeaways from this book that impact any reader are:

1) There is no single position or trade worth getting married to. If it goes negative, just cut it and move on. Just put the position back on, if the price moves again in your favor.

2) The is no best kind of trade, asset class or strategy. There are many ways to make money in markets, and it is best to be as familiar with as many as you can. Focus on the size of a trade's potential, not the type.

3) You need to have a clear vision about life and your purpose in it, before you can trade successfully. Wanting a lot of money is not a good enough start. You must think more deeply about an ultimate purpose.

It is worth reading all of the main 3 sections, not just the financial one to fully understand what makes George Soros tick inside. Whatever your politics, he at least had a clear reason written down in advance, before he took action. Many others can argue about his liberal views and ideas. It is best to balance them with why he even formed them in the first place. Life is a zero sum game for some. As a child, he was shielded from Nazi crimes by being raised publicly as a non-Jewish person in a secret adoption. It kept him alive. Despite having to witness terrible atrocities against other Jews as a youth, he had to contain himself. As an adult later in life, he could finally let out any anger he saw when seeing any similar actions taking place politically. All of that mental baggage certainly makes you think, what does it take to make such a man? If that 360 view works for you, then this book is Highly Recommended!

Please visit us for our Friday Feature Review where TMJ Partners will review books, movies, services and anything else with a financial theme. Follow us now for our free weekly updates, just click hereThank you for reading and learning more about how money is made in finance!

If you are interested in Sales & Trading, Banking or FinTech focused roles in Asia or Japan then click here. Follow TMJ Partners on Linkedin Instagram or TwitterWe are the world's #1 recruiter on Twitter, with over 40,000+ followers globally! click here! 

あなたアジア日本セールストレーディング,
バンキング、フィンテックの役割に興味がある場合は、こちらをクリックしてくださいティエムジェィパートナーズLinkedin Instagram またはTwitterでフォローしてください 世界中のTwitter第1位リクルーター40,000以上のフォロワー既に持っています!クリックしてください

For more Buy-Side and Sell-Side roles in Asia-Pacific, contact our TMJ Partners Japan & Asia Finance team.

Tokyo                                          Tokyo

      Mark  Pink                               Shinichi Nagasawa
Direct + 81 3 3505 3891              Direct + 81 3 3505 3891