This study traces the evolution of the modern merger phenomenon, which was sparked off by the low prices of the mid-seventies that made corporations look like rare bargains. The careers of some of its leading players - men like lawyers Joseph Flom and Marty Lipton, banker Bob Greenhill of Morgan Stanley, oil man T. Boone Pickens, Carl Icahn and Boesky himself - who irrevocably changed the way Wall Street does business - are also discussed. The consequences of the largest corporate mergers ever had led directly to the insider trading scandals, including the Boesky scandal that exposed illegal insider trading and his penalty of $1000,0000,000. This guide is aimed at businessmen and laymen who want to understand the new ethos on Wall Street and in the City of London. The author was an award-winning writer for "Business Week" and is currently the financial editor and a producer for WNBC-TV's "Strictly Business"