Kate Welling discussed her book, Merger Masters: Tales of Arbitrage, at MOI Global’s Meet-the-Author Summer Forum 2019. Kate is the editor and publisher of Welling on Wall St.

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About the book:

Merger Masters presents revealing profiles of monumentally successful merger investors based on exclusive interviews with some of the greatest minds to practice the art of arbitrage. Michael Price, John Paulson, Paul Singer, and others offer practical perspectives on how their backgrounds in the risk-conscious world of merger arbitrage helped them make their biggest deals. They share their insights on the discipline that underlies their fortunes, whether they practice the “plain vanilla” strategy of announced deals, the aggressive strategy of activist investment, or any strategy in between on the risk spectrum.

Merger Masters delves into the human side of risk arbitrage, exploring how top practitioners deal with the behavioral aspects of generating consistent profits from risk arbitrage. The book also includes perspectives from the other side of the mergers and acquisitions divide in the form of interviews with a trio of iconic CEOs: Bill Stiritz, Peter McCausland, and Paul Montrone. All three took advantage of M&A opportunities to help build long-term returns but often found themselves at odds with the short-term focus of Wall Street and merger investors. Told in lively, accessible prose, with bonus facts and figures for transaction junkies, Merger Masters is an incomparable set of stories with plenty of unfiltered lessons from the best managers of our time.

About the author:

Kate Welling, the author with Mario Gabelli, of “Merger Masters, Tales of Arbitrage,” (Columbia Business School Publishing, 2018), is an accomplished journalist who has been covering the Wall Street beat for 45 years.

Kate is the editor and publisher of Welling on Wall St., an independent online journal for professional investors, which she founded in 2012 as a successor to Welling@Weeden, the widely-read investment research publication she had created in 1999 under the aegis of institutional brokerage firm, Weeden & Co. WOWS, as her current newsletter is familiarly known, is eagerly read by savvy pros who subscribe for its uncommon perspective, depth of research and insights into the ever-evolving maelstrom that is the battle for financial survival.

When Kate left the Wall Street Journal’s copyediting corps to latch onto a staff writing job at Barron’s in 1976, she wasn’t two years out of Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, not yet 24 years old. It was at Barron’s that Kate honed her journalistic and financial skills — from the basics, like reading disclosure documents from the footnotes up, to the ineffable art of eliciting truths in interviews, whether with corporate titans, investment pros at the pinnacles of their careers or with the scallywags inevitably trying to pass themselves off as genuine articles to unwary investors. Working with Alan Abelson, Kate learned to tell those stories, engagingly, fully and fearlessly. She also institutionalized Barron’s in-depth interviews and Roundtables as both an art form and a crowning achievement in the careers of many participants.

After more than 25 years at Dow Jones, many spent serving as Barron’s managing editor, virtually all of them as a back-up reporter and occasional writer on Abelson’s iconic column, Up and Down Wall Street, Kate left Barron’s after putting its 1999 Roundtable issues to bed. She had been offered the opportunity to start her own investment journal, in conjunction with Weeden & Co. With Alan Abelson’s full-throated encouragement, she accepted the challenge. Today, each issue of WOWS, her independent, subscription-supported successor to that publication (accessible at www.wellingonwallst.com) is eagerly read by thousands of savvy investment pros.