Wednesday 25 Nov 2020 | 02:23 | SYDNEY
Wednesday 25 Nov 2020 | 02:23 | SYDNEY

Rogue trader


Mark Thirlwell

25 January 2008 10:32

As if the international financial system wasn’t getting enough bad press. Now it turns out that a rogue trader has cost France’s Société Générale €4.9bn in what is being described as the ‘biggest fraud in investment bank history’. 

The story of a trader going off the rails has become a familiar theme. The original rogue trader was of course Nick Leeson, the man who brought down Barings Bank in 1995. His escapades were depicted in a movie of the same name.  Leeson now has his own web site and you can hear him interviewed on the current scandal here. Shortly after Leeson came Yasuo Hamanaka, Mr Copper, who once controlled an estimated 5% of the world copper market and ended up costing Sumitomo Corporation an estimated US$2.6 billion.  The BBC provides a list of previous culprits here.

Photo of The Rogue Traders by Flickr user jeaneeem, used under a Creative Commons licence.