Quick: how does a company convert its 401(k) retirement plan into an employee stock ownership plan?

If questions like that have you stumped, you're not alone. Many bankers who know inventory and receivables financing inside and out don't know a private placement from a woven place mat. A Banker's Guide to Capital Markets Products, by William E. Parker (The John Colet Press, Boston, 1991; $78) is a good overview of the not-so-everyday financing tools companies might use. Written for bankers, the book offers straightforward information on some of the more important aspects of private placements, merger-and-acquisition financing, and bank treasury products. Of particular value are the glossaries and appendixes, which contain a variety of sample documents (of purchase and sale contracts, stock ownership plans, and so on). This sort of material can be enlightening to business owners as well as bankers. -- Bruce G. Posner