The world may be teetering again on the precipice of economic disaster but those with any investment in the popularity of Alessio Rastani, a hitherto unknown "independent trader", had a worse day than most after his memorable appearance on television yesterday morning.
"I have a confession, I go to bed every night and I dream of another recession, I dream of another moment like this," he told dumbstruck BBC News presenter Martine Croxall, when asked if the proposed eurozone bailout would work.
The interviewer thanked the trader for his candour but told him that "jaws had dropped" around the BBC newsroom while they listened to his answers shortly after 11am.
"I'm a trader," he said. "We don't really care whether they're going to fix the economy, our job is to make money from it.
"The 1930s depression wasn't just about a market crash," he added. "There were some people who were prepared to make money from that crash. I think anyone can do that. It's an opportunity."
The three-minute clip quickly spread online, provoking outrage. In the interview, Mr Rastani went on to advise "everyone watching this" that, "This economic crisis is like a cancer, if you just wait and wait hoping it is going to go away, just like a cancer it is going to grow and it will be too late."
He said it was "wishful thinking" to believe that governments could prevent another recession.
On his Twitter profile Mr Rastani describes himself as an "experienced Stock Market and Forex trader" who is "dedicated to helping others succeed".
Some were as quick to praise him as others were to damn him. Comments on his Facebook page included: "Great interview" and "talk about the truth," while others described Mr Rastani as a hero.
The current crisis bears considerable similarity to that which engulfed the world in 2008, though thus far it lacks the talismanic hate figure generously provided in the form of the former RBS chief Sir Fred Goodwin. The slick-haired, pink-tied and American-accented Mr Rastani may yet fill the void.
Quite how much he personally stands to gain should the financial world collapse again is unclear. The profile on his website, Leadingtrader. com, would suggest he is more reliant on "professional speaking" than his wizardry in the money markets to keep in him in hair gel. But after his performance yesterday it may just be that, like the eurozone, that particular sideline is beyond salvation.
"My belief is that anyone who wants to improve their income and achieve success in life, cannot afford to ignore learning how to trade," he says.
"Based on Alessio's sound advice, I pulled my money out of the markets just before the 2008 stock market crash. He saved me a fortune, not to mention my pension!" claims a client named as Maurice E.
Though Twitter users were quick to pick up on Mr Rastani's outburst, his dire forecast went mysteriously unnoticed by the wider financial markets. Shares in French and German banks rose by as much as 10 per cent, as traders analysed a proposed three trillion euro (£2.6 trillion) rescue package for the single currency.
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