The World for Sale: Money, Power, and the Traders Who Barter the Earth's Resources
The World for Sale tells the story of the modern-day commodity traders, largely unknown to the public. Commodity traders are the last swashbucklers of global capitalism: willing to do businesses where other companies don't dare set foot, thriving through a mixture of ruthlessness and personal charm - and often shaping global politics, from Cuba to Iraq, and from Russia to Libya.
The book profiles companies like Glencore, which emerged from the shadow of its notorious founder Marc Rich, a long-time fugitive from US justice, to become a blue-chip stock, and Cargill, the 153-year-old agricultural trading house whose family of American shareholders contains 14 billionaires - more than any other family in the world. It also shows how commodity traders play a critical role in modern finance, facilitating the flows of raw materials that keep the world's populations fed, its factories supplied, and its ships, planes and automobiles fuelled.
Benefiting from three decades of reporting from nearly 100 countries, including tens of thousands of pages of previously unpublished financial and legal documents and interviews with more than one hundred former and current executives, the book sheds unprecedented light onto an industry that has long operated in the shadows.