The rambling thoughts of a Modern Orthodox Chassid (whatever that means). Contact me at emansouth @

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Two events occurred last week that I find absolutely shocking.

First, a junior trader at SocGen managed to lose $7 billion dollars (to be fair, he only lost $3 billion; the bank lost the rest of the money closing out his positions). As someone who's worked at four investment banks for a total of over 22 years, it's hard to even imagine how that could happen without being discovered. I follow the story with interest.

Second, and equally shocking, is that, at a tish last Friday evening in Yerushalayim, the boys (virtually all DRS alumni learning at Yeshivas in Israel), overwhelmingly preferred the white part of two Brooklyn Bakery "black and white" cakes to the black part. How can this be? Where did we go wrong in our educational system? Vanilla frosting over chocolate? Say it ain't so!

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  • At 11:17 AM, Blogger Ezzie said…

    Re: SocGen - it boggles the mind. I was discussing it with a few people, and nobody can figure out how it didn't show up at any point - when the fake trades would have settled, even. Weird... It's one thing to have a couple of trades explained away for a few days, but this... wow.

    I read he was actually "massively in the money" as of a few weeks ago, was down 'just' $14 million when they first discovered it, then $3B before they could start doing anything and the $7.2B by the time they finished unloading. Absolutely crazy.

    Best part is he had $70+B on the line while SocGen is worth about $54B. Imagine if he'd lost it all.

  • At 11:28 AM, Blogger Jordan said…

    Perhaps the chocolate from that particular bakery is not as good.

  • At 12:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The white part of the Brooklyn Bakery black and white cake is famously dominant.

  • At 3:55 PM, Blogger tnspr569 said…

    Yeridas hadoros?

  • At 3:56 PM, Blogger tnspr569 said…

    Seriously, I think I've heard that the white frosting is preferred over the dark frosting. I like both kinds of forsting, perhaps the dark frosting even more so.

  • At 5:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    u were at the shalosh seudus tisch?
    i knew i should have come. Black and white cookies also?accch nothing like shabbas in jerusalem with black and white cookies.Brad

  • At 6:36 PM, Blogger Ben said…

    I see the common theme. You wanna be on the other side of trades with both those guys.

    The snow is sticking!

  • At 7:05 AM, Blogger MoChassid said…


    It takes a mathmetician to see the connection!

  • At 4:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Tish, splish.


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