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The Best of Wall Street

Posted by Larry Doyle on December 23, 2009 9:39 AM |

Regular readers of Sense on Cents are well aware that I have not been bashful to call out the financial industry whenever or wherever I thought it was deficient. Those deficiencies have been on the regulatory front, investor protection, abusive sales practices, questionable accounting, and more. Although these shortcomings have been highlighted in the midst of the recent economic crisis, the fact is many of them have been prevalent for a protracted period. In light of that, I am often asked the question as to why I pursued a career on Wall Street? How could I reconcile working within an industry that perpetuated such shortcomings?

My answer to those who ask such questions is the following:

1. In the course of day to day activities, the rank and file on Wall Street are not truly impacted by the overarching financial regulatory system. That system clearly has a major influence on the industry, but for those who kept their nose clean the regulators were a non-event.

From my current perch, I have a dramatically different view of the regulators and am happy to expose their shortcomings.

2. I loved the challenge of the industry! How could I utilize my intellect along with my instincts to assess how the market would move? This challenge was a daily event and was unbelievably stimulating.

3. The single greatest factor which drove my career and why I loved working on Wall Street was the competition. Regardless of where I was working at the time, I so badly wanted to compete and beat my counterparts at the other shops. How did this competition play out? I wanted to develop relationships with institutional customers so that whenever they had business to transact, they felt compelled to engage me. The competition was the daily adrenaline. There was nothing like it. The competition and results were only rewarding from the standpoint that my core values of honesty and integrity were never compromised.

I loved it.


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