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Ploy Counter Ploy
Wall Street During the Dot-Com Mania
by David Gahtan



Description: The story offers an ironic observations about, and critique of, the Wall Street culture in the late 1990s'; at the height of the dot-com mania.

The main character, Karl, is a divorced, low-key economist in his 50's who is employed by a commercial bank on Wall Street, and whose personality and outlook are antithetical to the dominant culture of the Street.

The main plot focuses on Karl's assignment to solicit a large amount of money from Roy, a very wealthy, eccentric and, at times, manic client about Karl's age. The assignment, though, at the very critical point when it is on the verge of being concluded, ends up a disastrous failure. Karl is abruptly fired and also finds himself with broken friendships. The reasons for this inexplicable turn of events involve temptation and deceit associated with financial deal making on a large scale.

Parallel to the central topic are a number of sub-plots, one of which looks at Karl's romantic interests in Harriet, an ambitious musician, and Sarah, a witty ex-academician. Another looks at Karl's reluctant involvement with Henry, a glib Wall Street go-getter type salesman. Looming in the background is Tim, an archetypal aggressive Wall Street executive.

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