Calling himself an “experienced, independent” trader, Alessio Rastani appeared on BBC News yesterday and his interview has since become a viral Internet hit.
In a frank and candid interview, Rastani said he had been dreaming of a recession for three years as he used it – like other traders – to make money.
He also told the public that Government’s don’t rule the world, but Goldman Sachs does.
Here’s the interview in full:
Since the broadcast, there has been public outrage at the trader’s comments but now it appears that Rastani may not be who he says he is.
The Guardian reports that Rastani could be a member of The Yes Men, as is alleged by a number of people across Twitter today.
If it emerges that Rastani is one of the Yes Men – a group of imposters who target large corporations – it will not be the first time that the BBC has been caught out by such a hoax.
Back in 2004, one of The Yes Men posed as a spokesman for Dow Chemical company and took full responsibility for the Bhopal chemical spill in 1984. Watch that interview here.
[UPDATE] It appears that Rastani is in fact a trader and not a Yes Man prankster.
The organisation has confirmed that the man who appeared on BBC News yesterday is not a member.
Robert Peston, BBC’s Business Editor said they checked the guy out and he seems to be a real trader. However, he is not licenced under the FSA and is just a daytrader.
Full Statement from the BBC:
The BBC have today issued the following statement regarding an interview with trader Alessio Rastani on the BBC News channel yesterday (Monday 25 September):
“We’ve carried out detailed investigations and can’t find any evidence to suggest that the interview with Alessio Rastani was a hoax. He is an independent market trader and one of a range of voices we’ve had on air to talk about the recession.”
Update Sep 28:
In an interview with The Telegraph, Rastani apparently clarified matters, leaving questions remaining as to why the BBC felt this man was an expert.
“They approached me,” he told The Telegraph. “I’m an attention seeker. That is the main reason I speak. That is the reason I agreed to go on the BBC. Trading is a like a hobby. It is not a business. I am a talker. I talk a lot. I love the whole idea of public speaking.”
“I agreed to go on because I’m attention seeker,” he said. “But I meant every word I said.”