Spiderweb Capitalism: How Global Elites Exploit Frontier Markets

  • 11h 36m 26s
  • Kimberly Kay Hoang
  • Recorded Books, Inc.
  • 2022

In 2015, the anonymous leak of the Panama Papers brought to light millions of financial and legal documents exposing how the superrich hide their money using complex webs of offshore vehicles. Spiderweb Capitalism takes you inside this shadow economy, uncovering the mechanics behind the invisible, mundane networks of lawyers, accountants, company secretaries, and fixers who facilitate the illicit movement of wealth across borders and around the globe.

Kimberly Kay Hoang conducted hundreds of in-depth interviews with private wealth managers, fund managers, entrepreneurs, C-suite executives, bankers, auditors, and other financial professionals. She traces the flow of capital from offshore funds in places like the Cayman Islands, Samoa, and Panama to special-purpose vehicles and holding companies in Singapore and Hong Kong, and how it finds its way into risky markets onshore in Vietnam and Myanmar. Hoang reveals the strategies behind spiderweb capitalism and examines the moral dilemmas of making money in legal, financial, and political gray zones.

Spiderweb Capitalism sheds critical light on how global elites capitalize on risky frontier markets, and deepens our understanding of the paradoxical ways in which global economic growth is sustained through states where the line separating the legal from the corrupt is not always clear.

About the Author

Kimberly Kay Hoang is associate professor of sociology at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Dealing in Desire: Asian Ascendancy, Western Decline, and the Hidden Currencies of Global Sex Work. She lives in Chicago. Twitter @kimberlykhoang

In this Audiobook

  • Introduction: Spiderweb Capitalism
  • Chapter 1 - Social Spiders' Tangled Webs
  • Chapter 2 - Spinning New Investment Deals
  • Chapter 3 - Varieties of Corruption and Bribery
  • Chapter 4 - Tax Strategies of Global Elites
  • Chapter 5 - Impunity in Stealth Webs
  • Chapter 6 - Moral Dilemmas and Regimes of Justification
  • Chapter 7 - The Exit: Feast and Famine
  • Conclusion: Unraveling Chaotic and Tangled Webs