Also found in: Financial.
Milken, Michael (Robert)(1946– ) investment entrepreneur; born in California. As a boy growing up in suburban Los Angeles, he helped his accountant father prepare returns at tax time. He married his high school girlfriend after graduating from the University of California: Berkeley and joined Drexel, Burnham, Lambert in 1970. He led the firm into the 1980s, using high-risk, high-yield bonds to finance corporate takeovers. Condemned by some for virtually inventing these "junk bonds"—bonds secured by little more than the future promises of the very companies the bonds were being used to take over—he was praised by others for shaking up complacent American businesses. In April 1989 he admitted to fraud and racketeering charges and served time in prison before being freed in 1993.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.