3 apparently unrelated banker suicides among the world's banking elites have occurred in just 6 days.
The latest was Mike Dueker, the chief economist at Russell Investments.
Dueker worked at Seattle-based Russell for five years, and developed a business-cycle index that forecast economic performance. He was previously an assistant vice president and research economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.He published dozens of research papers over the past two decades, many on monetary policy, according to the St. Louis Fed's website, which ranks him among the top 5 percent of economists by number of works published.
Before that, William Broeksmit, a former senior manager at Deutsche Bank, was found hanging in his home, apparently another suicide.
On January 28, "A vice president in technology operations, Gabriel Magee, died after falling from JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)'s London headquarters, the bank said today," reports Bloomberg Technology.
What does this mean, if anything? The Dow is down 6% in the new year, the worst month in 4 years for the DOW, but this is hardly earth-shattering, and not even an official correction. Also well-known and anticipated for months, if not years, the Federal Reserve has begun tapering its stimulus (critics say "steroids") program known as Quantitative Easing (QE1 - QE3) designed to inject liquidity into the banks, but really, a money hose for the asset markets.
Predictably, the conspirosphere is humming with speculation that this is a harbinger of a Great Crash (or, perhaps, Great Crash III, since we've had 2 50% stock market crashes in the last 14 years - an unprecedented pair of collapses not even seen in the Great Depression, when the stock market collapsed 80%, but more or less stayed there, not reaching its old height for 29 years).
But then again, the conspirosphere is always connecting the dots in some apocalyptic way on the interwebs. In contrast, some bankers, like Jamie Dimon, are doing quite well. In any case, it's an inauspicious start to the new year and a trend worth watching. Will this open a new futures market in banker longevity? Don't put it past Wall Street, which will bet on anything these days, to start a Dead Pool.