Other People’s Money: Inside the Housing Crisis and the Demise of the Greatest Real Estate Deal Ever M ade


A veteran New York Times reporter dissects the most spectacular failure in real estate history Real estate giant Tishman Speyer and its partner, BlackRock, lost billions of dollars when their much-vaunted purchase of Stuyvesant Town–Peter Cooper Village in New York City failed to deliver the expected profits. But how did Tishman Speyer walk away from the deal unscathed, while others took the financial hit—and MetLife scored a $3 billion profit?   Illuminating the world of big real estate the way Too Big to Fail did for banks, Other People’s Money is a riveting account of politics, high finance, and the hubris that ultimately led to the nationwide real estate meltdown.




“The read­er inter­est­ed in New York real estate his­to­ry, its mon­eyed elites, or even the self-con­tra­dic­to­ry aspects of social invest­ment should find ample mate­r­i­al for reflec­tion and enjoy­ment in Bagli’s account.”
Pub­lish­ers Week­ly

“Bagli’s sourc­ing is impres­sive, and read­ers will wel­come his abil­i­ty to make arcane invest­ment deal­ings com­pre­hen­si­ble.” —Kirkus

Oth­er People’s Mon­ey deliv­ers one of the great untold sto­ries of the finan­cial crisis—how greed, arro­gance, and the dis­tort­ed incen­tives of the com­mer­cial real estate mar­ket helped dri­ve our nation’s econ­o­my off a cliff. Told through metic­u­lous report­ing of what was arguably the worst real estate deal of all time, in this vital­ly impor­tant book Bagli demon­strates how the well-heeled and well-con­nect­ed walked away rel­a­tive­ly unscathed from the wreck­age that they cre­at­ed, leav­ing a dev­as­tat­ed mid­dle class hold­ing the bag yet again.”
—Neil Barof­sky, New York Times best­selling author of Bailout: How Wash­ing­ton Aban­doned Main Street While Res­cu­ing Wall Street

“Charles Bagli does for the pol­i­tics and eco­nom­ics of urban real estate finance what Jane Jacobs did for urban street life. Bagli’s new book, Oth­er People’s Mon­ey, uses the sale of a major hous­ing com­plex on Manhattan’s Low­er East Side, Stuyvesant Town-Peter Coop­er Vil­lage, to demon­strate how con­tem­po­rary real estate spec­u­la­tors deploy inter­na­tion­al finance and local pol­i­tics to change the hous­ing options of more ordi­nary city dwellers. Bagli, a tal­ent­ed jour­nal­ist, makes the street-lev­el impacts of abstract glob­al finance eas­i­ly under­stood.”
—Elliott Sclar, pro­fes­sor of urban plan­ning, Colum­bia Uni­ver­si­ty

 “Oth­er People’s Mon­ey is a ter­rif­ic book. With remark­able tex­tu­al clar­i­ty and a fine-tuned dra­mat­ic sen­si­bil­i­ty, Charles Bagli has recre­at­ed the extra­or­di­nar­i­ly high stakes pok­er game that was the largest real estate deal in U.S. his­to­ry. His char­ac­ters include the biggest real estate play­ers on the plan­et as well as mid­dle-class res­i­dents des­per­ate­ly hold­ing on by their fin­ger­tips to the only hous­ing they can afford. A tru­ly epic tale, one that sys­tem­at­i­cal­ly demon­strates the log­ic (and illog­ic) of the real estate bub­ble that set the stage for world­wide reces­sion and that reveals the wild, unfor­giv­ing nature of twen­ty-first-cen­tu­ry cap­i­tal­ism. It’s a pow­er­ful sto­ry and a great read.”
—Rick Fan­ta­sia, coau­thor of Hard Work: Remak­ing the Amer­i­can Labor Move­ment and pro­fes­sor of soci­ol­o­gy at Smith Col­lege

About the Author

Charles V. Bagli is a New York Times reporter who cov­ers the inter­sec­tion of pol­i­tics and real estate. He has writ­ten about the sale of high-pro­file build­ings, polit­i­cal con­tri­bu­tions of the real estate indus­try, the bat­tle to build a two-bil­lion-dol­lar sta­di­um for the Jets, bid rig­ging in the con­struc­tion indus­try, pay­offs at the tax asses­sor’s office, and a Sut­ton Place co-op that turned pub­lic land into a pri­vate park. He has worked for the New York Observ­er, the Dai­ly Record of Mor­ris­town, New Jer­sey, the Tam­pa Tri­bune and the Brook­lyn Phoenix. He lives with his wife in New Jer­sey. They have two daugh­ters.

See all Prod­uct descrip­tion
A vet­er­an New York Times reporter dis­sects the most spec­tac­u­lar fail­ure in real estate his­to­ry Real estate giant Tish­man Spey­er and its part­ner, Black­Rock, lost bil­lions of dol­lars when their much-vaunt­ed pur­chase of Stuyvesant Town–Peter Coop­er Vil­lage in New York City failed to deliv­er the expect­ed prof­its. But how did Tish­man Spey­er walk away from the deal unscathed, while oth­ers took the finan­cial hit—and MetLife scored a $3 bil­lion prof­it?   Illu­mi­nat­ing the world of big real estate the way Too Big to Fail did for banks, Oth­er People’s Mon­ey is a riv­et­ing account of pol­i­tics, high finance, and the hubris that ulti­mate­ly led to the nation­wide real estate melt­down.

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