Tuesday, 20 January 2009

"I only went to get a piece of cake..."

Found another one to add to the (frankly very short) list of Reality TV Shows I Quite Like: Million Dollar Traders

In Spring 2008 (well before Sterling became more useful as kindling) hedge fund manager Lex van Dam gave eight ordinary people a million dollars, a fortnight of intensive training and two months on the trading floor in the City (with a capital 'C').

I'd avoided it because I assumed it would be confusing, loud and stressful. And depressing. I watched it last night and it's fascinating. The whole process had previously been a TOTAL mystery to me.

I think I had in my head that traders were telepathically linked to the market and need only to shout "BUY!" or "SELL!" and it would be so.

But they actually pick up a phone and go

"Alright? It's Karen"

"Alright mate?"

"Yep. I'm looking at Titanium Industries, that's TIT, 'T' 'I' 'T'"


"Yep. Currently 343.6"

"Yep. I'll buy 100"


"Ok you've bought 100 at 343.6"

"Alright cheers bye"

Done. Actually now I've written it down I realise it's a process that's absolutely no clearer.


Allison said...

Hahaha! I was thinking the same thing, I still don't understand trading.

Sometimes those shows are fun to watch. I enjoyed The Apprentice for the first season.

Karen's Mouth said...

I know. So many more questions. Who is the person on the other end of the phone? Where do they work? And what do they do with those instructions? Crazy.

Also "Shares in Titanium Industries have started to rise sharply so with his spread Alf is losing money rapdily". What???

The Apprentice (UK version?) is gold.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Then what are all those mysterious hand signals for?

Karen's Mouth said...

Oh Barb, maybe that's it. Maybe the guy on the other end of the phone is making the hand signals. That's what he's doing in the pauses. Ace.