Nestled deep in the towers of banking and finance are the commodities traders who spend their days gambling with oil, gold, and corn contracts. They’re highly-educated world travelers with a penchant for risk, and they’re here to bet big on the future of the raw materials that make our economies hum. They’re very wealthy, barely regulated, and can be a force for tremendous good—or ill.
In The Secret Club That Runs the World, Kate Kelly, the bestselling author of Street Fighters, shines light not just on the commodities market, but also on some of its key figures. Her characters include Pierre Andurand, a hedge-fund manager who generated the winningest annual performance ever for an oil trader in 2008, and Ivan Glasenberg, whose secretive Swiss commodities giant, Glencore, has been thrown into the spotlight. Kelly paints a dramatic narrative of immense power in the hands of a few, and the so-far hapless efforts by the Obama Administration to rein in the cowboys.