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Socially Useless Syndrome Paralyzes Wall Street And The City!

Politics / Credit Crisis 2009 Sep 14, 2009 - 10:47 AM GMT

By: Andrew_Butter

Politics

It all started with Lord Turner, then Stephen Green of HSBC and right on his heels Lloyd Blankfein of Goldman Sachs. Now it's official, investment bankers are "socially useless"; the financial services industry is bracing itself for a tidal wave of press releases, finally the they are coming clean; next the hunt will be on for which branding consultancy got the million dollars to come up with that brilliant tag line.


Whoever it was, they deserve every penny; unconfirmed sources leaked from the Guardian Newspaper in UK reveal that as we speak there is a memo circulating prohibiting sarcastic remarks about "SU" Syndrome, and the British Department of Nanny has ordered a rush printing of disability stickers.

There you go lads, free parking and a get-out-of-jail card all in one.

The worry was always that the generous state-funded pension schemes might have been voided if there was proof of incompetence, willful negligence, or fraud. Now that's sorted, and even better, preliminary legal opinions have confirmed that a termination on the grounds of SU Syndrome would almost certainly be regarded as "wrongful", even criminal perhaps.

Of course a clear distinction must be made between being "socially useless" and "useless socially", the "relationship managers" who dominate the industry are anything but!

For example:

Man in smart suit walks into bank and asks to borrow a trillion dollars for five years. You say, "Yes Sir, have we got a deal for you!! Oh and by the way have you got any collateral?" Man opens up his bag and inside there is a miniature pet monkey.

So you call "Spotty Edith" up from "Risk Management" (useless socially), and you ask her, "so how much could we get for this monkey in five years time, just in case our valuable customer doesn't give us our money back, (heaven forbid)! And Sir, sorry Sir but we have to ask that question it's in the new Financial Regulations". 

Spotty Edith says, "I haven't got a clue".  So you tell her, "Thank you very much for your valuable contribution to the team", and she shuffles off down to the basement to manage some more risk.

And you tell the customer, "Not to worry Sir, but we are going to have to ask you some personal questions, we have this new computer program that uses multivariate regression analysis to determine "risk". So with your permission Sir, let's get on with it".

"Question One: Do you own a dog? OK very good; now let me guess under "race" ....mmm....quarter-Hispanic, half-White, and quarter-Cherokee Indian"?

"Fantastic, I knew it! One last question Sir, and your sexual preferences are?"

"Oh...I see…err…and very nice too Sir, (if I may be so bold)!"

"Now all I have to do is press this button, and err...I think it's this one, now it will run a Monte Carlo simulation to calculate the risk of default...there we go!"

"Oh dear, silly me, I forgot, I have to calculate the LTV. Let's see so we need 70%, mark-to-market that means the monkey is worth $1,428,571,428,571 exactly."

ENTER!

"Now we just have to wait for numbers to run".

"You know Sir, I'm not sure about the kind of people they are hiring for risk management these days, they can't even do simple arithmetic, and no vision!"

"Ah, very good, everything's sorted; Sir would you like a cheque or cash?"

By Andrew Butter

Andrew Butter is managing partner of ABMC, an investment advisory firm, based in Dubai ( hbutter@eim.ae ), that he setup in 1999, and is has been involved advising on large scale real estate investments, mainly in Dubai.

© 2009 Copyright Andrew Butter- All Rights Reserved
Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

Andrew Butter Archive

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