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How Hedge Funds Birthed The Language of Financial Catastrophe

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Bear Stearns may have perfected the art of the blowup, but hedge funds invented it. Not only that, they gave birth to the very language we use to describe it.

Bailout. Blowup. Collapse. Hedge fund parlance is a ready made goldmine for describing the fate of Bear Stearns.
The collapse of Long Term Capital Management prompted a Wall Street bailout; Amaranth became the largest-ever hedge fund blowup when it lost $6.6 billion; the collapse of subprime mortgage marred hedge fund performance. Turning a discrete event in the financial market into an identifiable, memorable term like Black Monday or the Great Depression is impressive enough. But fleshing out a vocabulary perfectly suited to express the gamut of profit-and-loss within the financial market? That is a rhetorical achievement—and that achievement is the rightful domain of the hedge fund industry.

Bear and Hedge Funds, a Common Language []