Top Trader: 'I Do Not Usually Accompany Young Boys To The Toilet..'

Kerviel with Beret

Societe Generale's alleged rogue trader, Jerome Kerviel, is currently on trial in Paris over that $5.9bn derivatives trading loss he incurred in 2008.

Here's some interesting sound bites from the trial.

'Jerome Kerviel is not Robin Hood. Jerome Kerviel is the trader who lost the largest amount of money in the world'.

Jean-Pierre Mustier, former head of SocGen's corporate & investment banking unit (The New York Post)

'When you exceed a limit, transparency says 'I tell my boss'. There is no justification for silence'.

Jean-Francois Lepetit, former head of the French securities regulator (Bloomberg)

'I think public opinion should know that it is not a man at fault here, but a system. He who is appearing before the court (Kerviel) is a pawn, a pawn that was used....and which, when he was no longer needed, was thrown away'.

Olivier Metzner, Kerviel's lawyer (The Guardian)

'For a year, no it's impossible. On a trading desk we are all within 50cm of each other. Everything is seen; everything is heard....(My bosses) encouraged me instead'.

Jerome Kerviel telling the court that it was impossible that his four bosses, who all sat less than 3 metres from him, not to know what was going on (The Guardian)

'The hierarchy is me, and the hierarchy did not know. You have always lied to me, Monsieur Kerviel'.

Jean-Pierre Mustier (Reuters)

'You were the only person on the desk who failed to respect the limits and you hid what you did'.

Prosecutor Jean Aldebert (The Times)

'That's false. I can't let you get away with saying that. Seventy per cent of the time, the (trading) limits were broken'.

Kerviel's reply to Aldebert (The Times)

'To the extent that it was exceeded every time, the limit was porous and never bothered us'.

Kerviel (Reuters)

'We encourage traders to know how to calculate risks. We did not encourage them to take risks'.

Jean-Pierre Mustier (Reuters)

'These techniques, it was not me who invented them. That I went too far, I admit it without a problem. It was completely idiotic'.

Jerome Kerviel (The Times)

'I do not usually accompany young boys to the toilet, but I was worried about him'.

Jean-Pierre Mustier on first learning that Kerviel was running a large unhedged position, and before the true extent of the problems became apparent. Mustier had apparently seen an e-mail that Kerviel had sent a friend, which suggested he was considering throwing himself under a train. SocGen had already been rocked by the recent suicide of another trader, and Mustier wasn't taking any chances (The Financial Times)

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