Bankers, Builders, Knaves, and Thieves: The $300 Million Scam at Esm

Donald L. Maggin, Author McGraw-Hill/Contemporary $21.95 (8p) ISBN 978-0-8092-4547-5
Investment manager Maggin here offers an expanded version of a 1986 Management Review article, recounting in devastating detail the collapse of ESM Government Securities Inc., a Florida brokerage firm, in the mid-'80s. The ESM scam involved crooked real estate developers financed by their own chain of deregulated Florida- and Ohio-based S&Ls; ESM's foundering, together with the discovery that auditors had been falsifying company records for seven years, forced Ohio's governor to declare a bank holiday to quiet the panic that resulted. Three of 11 ESM-related ``crooks'' have since died; the remainder are serving time. However, their fiasco was not a complete loss: the author credits the ESM affair with helping to bring about 1986 S&L regulatory legislation. Photos not seen by PW. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
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