LME’s only female voice is silenced


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The Independent Online

The London Metal Exchange is losing the only female trader on its famously boisterous floor.

Bethan Wilde, a well-regarded 29-year-old, has been poached by a Hong Kong firm, and will move there to take up her new role.

The LME has been providing a market for the buying and selling of metals since 1877, and remains one of the last trading floors to operate via open outcry, where traders shout out prices to agree deals.

Most exchanges are now almost entirely electronic.

City folk say open outcry favours male traders, since it is helpful to be both loud and tall.

Wilde has now been hired by Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing, and will start her new job in a month, Bloomberg reports. In an interview she gave a few years ago, she said  of her job: “I really enjoy it, I love  the team I work with, and I was  really grateful to Metdist for  hiring me.

“I know there can be prejudice but they were very open-minded, very keen and they have been extremely encouraging. They have given me my own books to trade and have been very supportive.”

The LME can trace its history as far back as 1571 and the opening of the Royal Exchange, which initially traded only copper.

Wilde worked on the LME floor for Metdist Trading. The LME is itself now owned by the Hong Kong Exchange.