The junk-bond-financed $6.75 billion buyout of United Airlines collapsed on Friday, Oct. 13, 1989. The stock market immediately dropped 191 points or almost 7%, equivalent to a 1,500-point drop today. Scary.
Rod Berens, head of research at Morgan Stanley at the time, called a departmentwide meeting after the market closed. I dreaded going. I had a list of tech stocks I was recommending that got killed that day. When I showed up, I noticed several cases of champagne—a weird way to celebrate the loss of wealth. But why not?…
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