Blood in the streets
The London bombing
From my perspective as a hedge-fund trader the 7 July 2005 bombings on
London were quite different from the 11 September attacks in the USA
four years earlier. The instant the second plane hit the World Trade Center
in New York, the world knew that there had been a substantial terrorist
attack and that the implications would be severe and long-lasting. The
futures on the US stock indices that were trading even before the general
market had opened immediately started to plummet. The London bomb-
ings were different. The first indication I received that something was amiss
was an email message from a broker that there were signal problems and
some tumult at Liverpool Street tube station. ‘What else is new?’ was my
reaction as I went back to my day thinking, ‘I hope this does not make
Anne late for her appointment at Bloomberg.’ My younger sister Anne had
been spending her summer as an intern at Holte Capital and had planned
an 8.30am appointment at Bloomberg near Liverpool Street station to have
a tutorial on the platform.
Within a minute there was another email from a broker who was clearly
keen to get the news out first: ‘Smoke coming from Liverpool St’. Already,
the unfolding events reminded me of the first message I had received four
years earlier that something was wrong in New York when a broker looking
out of his midtown Manhattan office simply wrote WTC on fire’. I tried
calling my sister’s mobile, but there was no signal. I guessed she must still
be on the Underground and thought nothing more of it.
14

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