Or, how to make $120 million in the market, using computers, your own printing press and a steady hand. 1973 saw the exposure of two scandals of unequaled proportion, but the White House affair effectively relegated the Wall Street debacle to the business pages. Ray Dirks, the maverick financial analyst and wheeler-dealer credited with uncovering the Equity Funding fraud, sees a relationship: a moral crisis that pervades all sectors of American society and a parallel loss of faith in economic as well as political institutions. A conglomerate with glamour uncommon to the staid insurance industry, Equity Funding was ""the darling of the go-go era"" -- the period of the '60's when stocks were recommended on the basis of their short-term growth and rapid increase in quarterly earnings, with no regard for the real worth or solidity of the company. Equity's leap was almost unbelievable -- and no wonder, since the company executives were forging thousands of policies, stock certificates, bonds, treasury bills and commercial paper to boot. In the week after The Wall Street Journal broke the story, the value of shares on the New York Stock Exchange dropped by $15 billion. Dirks presents a meticulously detailed chronology of the scheme from its inception, an eyewitness account of its downfall, and a sane, comprehensive critique of both the insurance and the securities industries. The insider's expose that only Dirks could have written.