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Summary

The examples in this chapter show that many interesting psychological and emotional factors are involved with the desire to get rich quick. For example, victims of get-rich-quick investment scams have a strong attachment bias (see Chapter 2, “Behavioral Finance”) to the investment and its operators. Victims also seek social support and camaraderie with others in the investment (see Chapter 10, “The Social Investor”). After the victims realize they have been scammed, they feel the pain of regret (Chapter 2) and try to reduce this pain by blaming others, like the government. But ultimately, they are in this mess because of greed. This greed is combined with the realization that there may not be any other way for them to achieve their dreams. These schemes frequently ruin more than just the finances of the victims. The schemes build quickly because people are recruited by friends, neighbors, relatives, colleagues, and others in a position to gain their trust. When the pyramid falls, the victims frequently blame the person who recruited them. Thus, relationships are also destroyed.


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