Sudden Death

Mark Stevens, Author Dutton Books $19.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-453-00673-6
``Insider'' anecdotes, re-created dialogue and sharply drawn portraits evoke the constant feuding that preceded the fall in October 1988 of Hutton, one of America's most prestigious brokerage firms. This well-documented account by syndicated financial columnist Stevens ( The Big Eight ) does not spare the brilliant, imperious playboy and Hutton CEO Robert Fomon who, over 17 years, built up the company's national branch retail system, but whose arrogance was matched only by his management team's greed, ambition and incompetence. Massive company fraud included Hutton's alleged embezzlement, its inability to adjust to modern management methods and incessant fights for control among board members (Peter Ueberroth, George Ball and Hutton heiress and actress Dina Merrill among them). Such inherent organizational weakness made it relatively easy, despite Fomon's ouster by the board, for Shearson Lehman to take over the 83-year-old firm for $960 million in December 1987. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/01/1989
Release date: 08/01/1989
Paperback - 978-0-452-26438-0
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