Wall Street

Speculators caused a stock market crash in 1792, forcing the federal government to bail out New York bankers— and the nation

Wall Street’s first bubble swelled burst in the spring of 1792, exerting a profound effect on American politics and society. Nine years after the Treaty of Paris and the acknowledgement of the former colonies— independence, both Europe and America lay in turmoil. Read more >>
Few periods in the history of this country can match the impact of the years between 1917 and 1941. In less than a generation America experienced the first large-scale dispatch of U.S. Read more >>
Growing up in a family with many members who earned their livings on Wall Street and with many ancestors and relatives who had done the same, I—as might be expected—very early heard stories of business that I found as fascinating as the tales of military action I was soaking up Read more >>
Overrated For a hundred years the armor-plate scandal of the 1890s has been offered up as a definitive example of corporate greed. In fact it’s a better example of government incompetence. Read more >>

When terrorists first struck New York’s financial district

If you go downtown in Manhattan to the offices of the old J. P. Morgan firm at the corner of Wall and Broad, you’ll see the pocked-marble scars of the first blow that terrorists struck at America’s financial heart, the Wall Street bombing of 1920. Read more >>

Will the current bull market die spectacularly, à la 1929, or—as in 1974—strangle in weird silence?

J.P. Morgan did not have much use for either the stock market or reporters. So when one reporter importunately asked him what the market was going to do one day, he replied, with about equal parts contempt and truth, “It will fluctuate.” Read more >>

As long as there have been bankers and brokers, there have been people asking what would happen if they had to earn an honest living

On October 26, 1911, the old Life magazine published a cartoon entitled “When We All Get Wise.” The implication of the cartoon, of course, was that if the ordinary people of the country would “just say no,” this time to bankers, brokers, and capi Read more >>
In June 1984 I got an odd call from an editor at The Wall Street Journal. I had submitted an article that marked the one hundredth anniversary of the first publication of Charles Dow’s stock-market average. Read more >>

A knowledgeable and passionate guide takes us for a walk down Wall Street, and we find the buildings there eloquent of the whole history of American finance

One of the pleasant burdens of friendship, and of living in a renowned and intimidating great city like New York, is that friends planning to visit will ask me to show them the sights of some quarter of town, most usually in the borough of Manhattan, county o Read more >>
Until July 2, 1986, I felt comfortably detached from the current insider-trading scandal on Wall Street. Read more >>

The most influential economist in the United States talks about prudence, productivity, and the pursuit of liquidity in the light of the past

TWENTY YEARS AGO , the American economy hummed like a well-oiled machine. We actually exported automobiles and oil. Read more >>

Ever since 1792, bulls and bears together have tripped the light fantastic on Wall Street’s sidewalks—and sometimes just tripped

On a cold Saturday in December, 1865, the 350 members of the New York Stock Exchange gave a party to celebrate moving into a new building on Broad Street, near the corner of Wall—the first home of their own. Read more >>

How J. P. Morgan, like a “one-man Federal Reserve,” calmed the bankers and helped ease the Panic of 1907