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When finance became a matter of life and death

While the financial markets continue their turmoil this week saw a terrible finale to what has been a terrible week when it was reported that a City investment manager committed suicide in the aftermath of the volatile markets and increased criticism of the City and practices which have been around for many years. Even though it would be wrong to link the suicide of Kirk Stephenson, 47, the chief operating officer of Olivant to recent press comments about the City, they have not helped.

Unfortunately this is the ugly side of finance, the key personnel who take the pressure, have employees to consider and a family to support. Perhaps now we will see some of the pressure taken off those in high pressure positions in the City and a realisation that yes there are rogue elements in the City, but it is wrong to tar everyone with the same brush.

While the current economic crisis may well be coming to an end if the US rescue is put in place, the pain in the finance sector and property market will still continue for some time yet. Those who expect a turnaround overnight do not understand how the City works which is why maybe the pressure of criticism needs to be toned down a little.

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