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  1. #1

    Default City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    This looks like it will be a cracking read!

    London `Cityboy' Unmasks World of Analysts Pushing `Gibberish'
    2008-06-19 20:25 (New York)

    By Sarah Thompson
    June 20 (Bloomberg) -- As a utilities analyst at Dresdner
    Kleinwort, Geraint Anderson was advising clients how to invest. At
    the same time, through an anonymous London newspaper column, he
    was telling readers how analysts wrote ``utter gibberish.''
    Anderson, 35, announced on June 2 in his Cityboy column in
    TheLondonPaper that he'd quit and ended a 12-year stockbroking
    career: ``I've been wasting my precious time for far too long,
    working my sweet a** off in a rat race with no end in sight.'' He
    revealed his identity in the newspaper this week.
    While for 22 months he used his column, the newspaper's most
    popular, to describe colleagues as ``degenerate'' and himself as
    ``boring the pants off clients,'' Anderson also was writing a book
    about London's financial workers. ``Cityboy: Beer and Loathing in
    the Square Mile'' will be published next week, and scourges
    brokers through composite characters and banks.
    ``We didn't invent greed, us City boys, but we have certainly
    become its finest exponents,'' Anderson said in an interview. He
    was ranked the No. 1 stock picker in the U.K. and Ireland for
    utilities by StarMine Corp. in 2005.
    Dresdner Kleinwort spokesman Michael Goodbody said the
    London-based investment bank had no comment on Anderson's book or
    columns, published in a newspaper with a circulation of 500,000.
    ``We wish him every success,'' Goodbody said.
    Anderson started writing the book, produced by Headline
    Publishing, after a scooter accident last August that almost
    killed him. He said he wanted to tell people in a ``dramatic'' way
    about the lives of people who work in the City through the
    experiences of a broker progressing through the industry.

    `Total Buffoon'

    ``You're quite busy when you're a stockbroker, even when
    you're a lazy degenerate like me,'' he said. The three-week break
    after the accident gave him the time to write the book.
    Anderson makes a mockery of himself as much as colleagues.
    The book's narrator is ``Steve Jones,'' who goes to work for Bank
    Inutile. ``There are quite a few similarities between us,'' said
    At one point, Jones, who's been negotiating to switch firms,
    gets a phone call with an offer: basic pay of 100,000 pounds
    ($197,000) and two guaranteed bonuses of 250,000 pounds.
    ``What a total buffoon!'' Jones says of the person making the
    offer. ``These total losers think that I'm worth almost 700,000
    pounds over the next year-and-a-half. Don't they realize I'm just
    a stoner hippy who got lucky?''
    Anderson himself took a year's break after graduating with a
    BA in history from Cambridge University. He grew a goatee, hair
    that fell to his shoulders, and wore earrings.

    `Cover Your Back'

    His brother convinced him to join London's financial-services
    industry, and Anderson bought his first suit second-hand, for six
    pounds, from a school friend.
    His alter ego, Jones, tells readers in the book of the six
    key pieces of advice he received at the outset of his career and
    which stood him in ``good stead'' for more than a decade:
    * ``Press the Flesh.'' Take clients out for expensive
    meals, often. ``My later success at this aspect of the job was
    aided by the fact that most of my competitors were deeply tedious
    individuals,'' Jones says.
    * ``Publish or Perish.'' Write research notes. ``All you
    needed to do was spin a vaguely plausible yarn that was difficult
    to disprove, write it down, and the suckers would bite.''
    * ``Blow Your Own Trumpet.'' Boast a lot. ``It is a given
    in this business that if someone can steal your thunder and take
    credit for your achievement then they will do so.''

    `Steal His Clients'

    * ``Cover Your Back.'' Avoid taking a stand. ``Bold
    statements like, `These shares will go up because . . .' make you
    a hostage to fortune. If you know what's good for you, bung in a
    few caveats.''
    * ``Ride on a Successful Analyst's Coat Tails.'' And once
    everything has been learned from this person, ``form your own
    team, stealing his clients and ideas.''
    * ``None of This S*** Matters.'' The job ``is just the
    best legal means of making vast amounts of cash.''
    The book is an expansion of many of the anecdotes featured in
    Anderson's columns.
    TheLondonPaper, published by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. and
    distributed free to commuters, wanted someone to write an
    ``insidery column about the City,'' Associate Editor Dominic
    Midgley said. Anderson was ``prepared to tell it like it is'' and
    became ``the most popular columnist we had.''
    Jones, the book's protagonist, has observations on all manner
    of brokers' behavior.

    `Destroyed His Personality'

    ``Cityboys (and occasionally Citygirls) become arrogant
    because their job often requires them to do so,'' he tells the
    reader. ``Every day a trader or fund manager buys or sells a
    share, they're implicitly saying that the market (e.g. someone
    else) has GOT IT WRONG and mispriced the asset.''
    He also has warnings for people who meet brokers.
    ``Next time you're at a dinner party and you find yourself
    sat next to some dreadful tosser from the City braying on about
    how fantastic he is, remember two things,'' says Jones. ``Firstly,
    it's probably not the poor chap's fault, but rather his job that's
    destroyed his personality. Secondly, be aware that he needs to be
    an arrogant buffoon in order to carry out his job properly.''
    Anderson said he has enough money never to have to work.
    ``I'm going to be living the life of Riley but I also have
    plans,'' he said in the interview. ``I want to do some good, give
    something back.'' He's not sure what, just yet.

  2. #2
    white swans need love too Timmy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Between the lines

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    Thanks Sam.

    Articles like this ... I dunno ..... easy to be critical once you have made the big bucks???? Don't see too many of these types of exposes where the author has given his ill-gotten gains to charity and then put the boot in .... I dunno, maybe I am being unfair. Should be a cracking read though!
    The contents of this post were tested, ruthlessly, on small, cute, furry animals. Most of them were fatally harmed. Hence, if this post causes irritation, please discontinue reading immediately.

  3. #3

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    well I've taken the plunge and ordered it off Amazon.

    Apparently it's fiction (based on fact) but I'm prepared to give it a crack.

    Will let you know how it goes.


  4. #4
    Hatchet Moderator doctorj's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    It's a great read. It offers a really good insight into the city... well worth it.

  5. #5

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    I forgot to post my thoughts on this book.

    very funny indeed.

    As The Doc says a great insight into what happens in the golden mile.

    worth the read if you can get a hold of it.

  6. #6

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    Every day a trader or fund manager buys or sells a
    share, they're implicitly saying that the market (e.g. someone
    else) has GOT IT WRONG and mispriced the asset.''
    I like the rest of it, but this part is rubbish. I'm not sure a profitable trader could think like that. Then again, he says it himself - he's just stoner hippy who got lucky.

  7. #7

    Default Re: City Boy - a broker spills his guts

    Loved this book - a very entertaining read that had me laughing my head off!

    Definitely worth a read!

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