Rogue UBS Trader Used Facebook To Vent

Rogue UBS trade Kweku Adoboli used Facebook to talk about his alleged crimes with the market rise and falls.

If you weren’t one of UBS trader Kweku Adoboli’s 420 friends on Facebook, you would probably have no clue who he was. Until today.
That’s when UBS revealed that the 31-year old Londoner bilked $2 billion from the the Swiss bank’s coffers, and the public learned that the trader posted about his rogue activities on Facebook for all to see.
As of 10 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Adoboli’s page had been deleted from Facebook, but not before news outlets, such as the Financial Times, descended into his profile to find out all about the huckster, from his love of Al Jazeera to MC Xander.
His final Facebook post on September 6 says it all:

Need a Miracle.

But throughout the summer, the trader was pretty open about his feelings as he followed the twists and turns of the market. According to FT, on July 31 he posted:

Will they? Won’t they? Reduced to watching Fox News for guidance, it’s a grim affair.

After a steep market fall a week later, Adoboli reportedly shared:

Can we shut down global markets for a week so everyone can just chill out?

When the news of the charges broke, his friends started reacting on the trader’s profile. One post said:

You are a genuinely good person, honest and humble. You don’t deserve this… You will get through it.

Which leads to an interesting conundrum: Do his friends bear any responsibility for what happened, since they were presumably following Adoboli’s posts? Or were they as in the dark as Adoboli’s bosses appear to have been?
It probably doesn’t help that the banking community ranks low among the world’s most respected institutions. But there are reports that the media started hounding some of Adoboli’s Facebook friends trying to get information on the trader when the news broke. In the age of social media, Facebook accounts have turned into a treasure trove of immediate information about the accused.
Not too surprisingly, a bit of comic relief emerged in the form of a fake Facebook page called “Kweku Adoboli-What a Banker.”
What do you think of the way Adoboli used Facebook?
Photos: Facebook/Financial Times

Publish date: September 15, 2011 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT