Alessio Rastani is not hoaxer Andy Bichlbaum/Jacques Servin, but nor is he a Goldman Sachs trader spilling the beans.
Alessio Rastani appeared on a BBC news program, headlined as an "Independent Trader", and proceeded to say the end is coming, millions of people will lose everything, and that Goldman Sachs rules the world.
The conspiracy world ate this up, as a kind of "insider lets slip the truth about the powers that be"
The truth is rather simpler. The problem here is that the BBC set up Rastani as some kind of authority on the world financial system. But in reality he's not. He's an "independent trader", sometimes called a "day trader", which is someone who attempts to make a living by rapidly trading in financial markets with their own money. Trading as a full time job. He works from a bedroom in his girlfriends house.
He explains here:
In other words, he's just some guy. He's no expert. He's got no inside information. He doesn't even follow the fundamentals, he just looks a charts and tries to divine what will happen. The BBC was probably looking for an institutional trader (such as someone who actually works at Goldman Sachs), someone with a broad overview of the financial markets. But somehow they end up with this guy. Perhaps they need to check their sources a little better.I started trading for real in 2006. [...] I use actually TradeStation. [...] I work from home [...] I’m mostly a technical trader. I look at charts. I’m not a big, huge fan of funny analysis, you know, fundamentals.
The picture was complicated by the existence of a hoax interview with a guy who looks superficially the same as Rastani. In the Forbes interview the interviewer even claims that it's the same person. Reuters says: "Rastani and Finisterra look and sound very similar to each other". But looking for a few seconds more it's apparent that it's a different person. (Look at the nose, and more distinctly the shape of the ears, and the turn of the mouth as he speaks).
Here's another comparison. Similar, but not the same guy. Unless he's lost a lot of weight and had plastic surgery.
And one more, this time with the scale adjusted so the eyes are equally spaced.
The above comparisons become redundant when you realize that the Yes Man in the Bophal video is Andy Bichlebaum, aka Jacques Servin. That video was taken in 2004, seven years ago. Jacques Servin now looks like this:
Rastani's non-notability becomes more obviously when you look at his web site (which has only existed since February 2010)
So there's no insider spilling the bean here. He's just a day trader who has had the good fortune to manage to survive for more that a few years, presumably by following a strategy that benefited from (or was at least someone insulated from) the recent financial turmoil. Hence he, like every other trader with short term success, thinks he's hit on the recipe for success, so he paints a simplistic picture for the future based on his rather limited experience - projecting what he thinks happened, onto what he thinks will happen.My belief is that anyone who wants to improve their income and achieve success in life, cannot afford to ignore learning how to trade. The problem is that most people are under the illusion that they either can do it themselves by reading books, or that they need someone to give them a “share tip”. Both these approaches are flawed. Books can be useful but nobody is going to give away their trading secrets in a book. As for tips – tips are for waiters!
To be successful in trading or investing you need to apply a PROVEN STRATEGY and have a POSITIVE MINDSET. A proven strategy need not be complicated, but actually very simple. But the strategy must teach you when to BUY and when to SELL.
In the process, he's got himself a lot of publicity, which will help a lot with his backup career - selling books and teaching about independent trading.