Day trader Alessio Rastani, who sent shockwaves through the media in September 2011 by declaring that “Goldman Sachs rules the world”, has addressed Occupy the London Stock Exchange (OLSX) tent protesters.
Rastani, who is an independent rather than city trader, caused amazement during a provocative BBC interview on the Eurozone crisis by admitting that traders like him had been "praying for a recession" and were in the business of making as much money out of the downturn as possible, not least through hedging and bond activities.
Talking with Occupy protesters near St Paul's at the end of last week, he declared: “Cameron and Obama are in the pockets of Goldman Sachs – otherwise why aren’t they stopping Goldman Sachs’ domination. The worse this crisis gets, the more power that Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan have.”
When asked by an occupier about the direction of the movement, he advised that it should focus its attention on the financial industry, rather than governments.
Alessio Rastani continued: “The situation in the financial world is a lot worse than people think and a lot worse than is being portrayed through the media. By January 2012 the entire system is looking at collapse. American hedge funds are over exposed to European debts. I agree with the Occupy movement. It shouldn’t be branded as anti-capitalist, it is about democracy."
He added that under current conditions and rules “Wall Street will always win." Rastani said: "They make money by using the ignorance of normal people and relying on our irrationality. People need to take control of their money, and not rely on the advice of experts. Bonuses should be stopped, period – these organisations are unethical in using tax-payers money to survive."
He went on: “Instead of watching X Factor, get involved to help change the world. You have to invest in your mind, not just invest in the markets. If you want to hurt them, read and educate yourself about how the financial markets work. When you wise up, they cannot manipulate you.”
When asked about the government guarantee on savings, Alessio said: “Technically the government say they will guarantee and honour up to £85,000. However, Moody’s have downgraded about 12 UK banks – they said that there is little hope that government can guarantee. Why would you trust the government? I don’t think any money is safe in the markets.”
* Rostani interviewed on BBC2 Newsnight (YouTube): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aC19fEqR5bA 
* Trader or prankster? Forbes Magazine talks to Rostani: http://www.forbes.com/sites/emilylambert/2011/09/27/trader-or-prankster-...