An economist and journalist at Quartz looks to sex work for enlightenment about how to manage financial decision-making and equips readers with five principles for dealing with risk, principles used by some of the world's most interesting risk takers.
In what is probably the most entertaining book about risk management ever written, economist Schrager expands upon her specialty in retirement planning to examine how risk is handled in unusual professions and what this can teach us about managing risk ... She makes complicated principles accessible so the lay reader can easily put them to use for retirement planning or everyday decision making.
Allison Schrager has clearly written a book of the complex kind ... Unfortunately, she falls short in the important news-you-can-use category. And that’s too bad, because, as her title suggests, she has a provocative approach, and she has an interesting take on investing as well ... All of this is worth thinking about, but if you want to know what you should do, there is no answer here. The problem, in this case, is that Ms. Schrager doesn’t make a recommendation to buy annuities, nor does she come out against them. That kind of fuzziness, when it comes to practical recommendations, is a flaw in the book ... Still, Ms. Schrager tells many entertaining stories about how people in various professions as diverse as horse breeding and the military go about trying to reduce risk ... Is investing like prostitution? Other than the risk involved in both cases, I’m not sure. But her discussion did make the risk reduction in investing seem prudent, as well as minimal and inexpensive.
Prostitution seems like a long stretch from the risks most of us deal with, such as outliving our retirement funds, but Schrager inventively extracts five life lessons from her interviews with practitioners of the so-called oldest profession, as well as others who’ve chosen unusual career paths ... Chief executive officers and Wall Street players could learn a thing or two from the paparazzi, prostitutes, and other outre characters who inhabit An Economist Walks Into a Brothel.