The founder of The Charles Schwab Corporation recounts his ups and downs as he made stock investing, once the expensive and clubby reserve of the few, accessible to ordinary Americans.
In this deeply personal memoir, Schwab describes his passion to have Main Street participate in the growing economy as investors and owners, not only earners. Schwab opens up about his dyslexia and how he worked around and ultimately embraced it, and about the challenges he faced while starting his fledgling company in the 1970s. A year into his grand experiment in discounted stock trading, living in a small apartment in Sausalito with his wife, Helen, and new baby, he carried a six-figure debt and a pocketful of personal loans. As it turned out, customers flocked to Schwab, leaving his small team scrambling with scarce resources and no road map to manage the company’s growth.
He recounts the company’s game-changing sale to Bank of America—and how, in the end, the merger almost doomed his organization. We learn about the clever and timely leveraged buyout he crafted to regain independence; the crushing stock market collapse of 1987, just weeks after the company had gone public; the dot-com meltdown of 2000 and its reverberating aftermath of economic stagnation, layoffs, and the company’s eventual reinvention; and how the company’s focus on managing risk protected it and its clients during the financial crisis in 2008, propelling its growth