It seems like Nick Leeson, the rogue trader who was arrested and jailed for six years for losing Barings Bank, his former employer, $200 million, is itching to get back in the game now that he’s off Wall Street and working at Galway United, the soccer club.He told Galway News recently that Ireland should default ASAP, not wait for the IMF to bail it out.
“Ireland has to default on its debt to the bond holders, and the time to do that is now – if you get involved with the IMF, it will be too late.
“The Government needs to postpone the budget, resign and call a General Election, because any other course of action will be too severe for the country. The size of the bailout being discussed cannot be repaid by a country with a population of less than five million people, it just can’t be done.
“The right thing to do is default on repayments to bond holders and start afresh, but that has to be done before any support is accepted from the IMF, as once that support is accepted, it will be too late.”
Leeson’s been busy since he got out of jail in 2001, by the way. He calls himself a sought after dinner guest on his website. In addition to running Galway, he’s written two books – both about his life as a rogue trader – and now he’s giving stress-relief workshops.
It should be noted that anything he says is coming from a guy who lost his company, the UK’s oldest investment bank, $200 million because of his speculation about another country – Japan – in 1995. He speculated that Japan’s stock market would not move significantly overnight. It did. Barings Bank collapsed because of his bet.