In this episode Christian is joined by journalist Liam Vaughan, author of Flash Crash – a gripping account of how Navander Singh Sarao ran a trading system from his bedroom in his parents’ house in West London that contributed to the infamous 2010 flash crash where $1tn dollars was suddenly wiped from the value of global markets.
Liam tells the story of Sarao, a video game and football obsessive who developed a remarkable ability to read financial markets.
From humble day-trader to scourge of Wall Street, Sarao made a fortune before coming to the attention of US regulators and, ultimately, the FBI.
What motivated Sarao? It wasn’t money, since despite earning tens of millions of pounds he never splashed out and never left his parents’ modest home.
Liam says that the objective was just to win. For Sarao, global financial markets were just another video game, and the game had to be completed.
The book is a thrilling and fascinating account not just of Sarao’s exploits, but of the vulnerabilities baked into modern financial markets.
Also in this episode, Christian looks at the criticism directed at HSBC and Standard Chartered after they publicly backed China’s Hong Kong crackdown; the winners and losers in the latest FTSE reshuffle; and the large businesses tapping into the Bank of England’s Coronavirus loan scheme.
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