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February 20, 1987 - Image 37

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-02-20

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

subscribe to — is that other firms are out
to get us because of anti-Semitism," an
employee at Drexel told me. Yet he ac-
knowledged that people in his firm were
antsy about the confluence of the firm's
Jewish reputation and its aggressive
trading methods.
"Once you indict one Jew in a ring, it's
not a surprise you're going to indict
others," said Steven Cohen, professor of
sociology at Queens College and author of
the American Jewish Committee's 1984
National Survey of American Jews. "Most
Jews have mostly Jewish friends. Around
the country, outside of New York, over 40
percent of all Jews say their closest
business associates are Jewish. In New
York, where Jews consitute half of all white
males with professional degrees, it figures
that this percentage has to be much much
higher on Wall Street." As Cohen pointed
out, this ethnic pattern of networking also
holds true for non-Jews. Adds David Singer,
"Let's put it this way. It'd be hard to in-
dict a Puerto Rican for insider trading"


In Louis Auchincloss's new novel, Diary
of a Yuppie the young hero, Henry Service,
tells his conservative boss:
"The-trouble with you and Blacklock
is that neither of you has the remotest
understanding of the moral climate in
which we live today. It's all a game, but
a game with very strict rules. You have
to stay meticulously within the law; the
least misstep, if caught, involves an in-
stant penalty. But there is no particular
moral opprobrium in incurring a penal-
ty, any more than there is being offside
in_ football. A man who is thought to
have bought or sold stock on inside in-
formation, or misrepresented his assets
in a loan application, or put his girl-
friend on the company payroll, is not
`looked down on,' except by sentiment-
alists. He's simply caught, that's all.
Even the public understands that.
Watergate showed it. You break the
rules, pay the penalty and go back to the
game."

The floor of the New York Stock Exchange:
"Most immediately, for many, working on Wall
Street has become a matter of sitting in front
of a Quotron or Telerate screen. Not only are
the human contacts with clients gone, but
most traders job-hop frequently."

37

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