A lightheartedly amoral and apocryphal case study--featuring a rascally investment counselor--of how, under favorable circumstances, a common stock's price can be rigged for fun. . . and uncommon profit. American Building Products Co., an assets-rich (timber) concern with steady if unspectacular earnings power, becomes an object of speculative interest once an ambitious but brainless founding-family scion assumes managerial control. The new boy promptly launches a diversification/acquisition program that nets a small semiconductor firm longer on promise than performance. The odd coupling glamorizes ABP's stodgy image and attracts the ravening interest of professionals like the narrator who plots a classic four-stage coup involving (1) accumulation, (2) mark-up, (3) distribution, and (4) mark-down, which, possibly, signals a repetition of the whole cycle. In the course of detailing this caper, our friendly counselor reveals virtually every trick of the Wall Street trade and offers real-economik insights as to how securities exchanges really work. The author, whose nom de plume refers to the NYSE's Manhattan address, has an inordinate fondness for allusive names (a colleague called Confrer, a raider yclept Lupine, a shady brokerage house doing business as Carrion & Co.). Indulgences of this sort apart, the text is a worthy entry in the rogues-to-riches genre created by ""Adam Smith.