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7/1 Municipal managers to return to shop floor

4/1 Police: take photo of strange people

3/1 Gaza protest criticises politicians

1/1 Thousands to protest against attacks on Gaza

1/1 Mustapha Laboui leaves district council


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Credit crunch: 'The rougher, the better'

4 October 2008 - Not everybody is crestfallen over the financial crisis. "With the credit crunch, our job has definitely become more fun. As far as we're concerned, the rougher, the better", Amsterdam stock trader Maurice op de Beek told de Volkskrant.

Stockbroking house Acción, located at the Keizersgracht, gains from turmoil at the stock markets, regardless of whether shares go up or down. While traders follow the news on the American bailout plan on TV, the director drops in to ask if anyone has gone to fetch beer yet.

Whereas the people at Acción are not mawkish about the financial crisis, they do complain about the fact that America, Britain and the Netherlands have prohibited short selling.

"When the prohibition was announced, the atmosphere was really depressed here. In fact, we have had an arm cut off. It's an undemocratic decision. The government is saving the large banks, while small traders like us are the victims", Op de Beek said.

"Since the prohibition, it has been much quieter here. In fact, we're just sitting and waiting all day for the money to flow in. Or fly away, of course".

Source: Ayolt de Groot / de Volkskrant (in Dutch). Photo: Lame54 / Democratic Underground


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