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Retrenched Bankers Can Fit In Any Kinds Of Trade
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The former ICAP Plc broker stood near the bar, pint of cider in hand, surrounded by members of his house music collective, Hellsinki-V.

Clad in their signature mad scientist garb -- lab coats and 3D glasses -- Danny Wilkinson and his bandmates were celebrating with pre-holiday merrymakers in London’s trendy Hoxton Square. It has been a busy year, with gigs ranging from the Lechlade Music Festival, in England’s Cotswolds, to Ibiza.
For Wilkinson, the band is a second act -- part job, part lark -- after his career in finance abruptly ended. He was one of dozens of traders and brokers fired after being implicated in a global conspiracy to rig the London interbank offered rate, a key interest-rate benchmark. Even though he was acquitted at trial of manipulating Libor, he was effectively exiled from the industry.
“After 25 years in the City, I suddenly found myself at home thinking ‘what do I do now?”’ said Wilkinson, 50, who used to earn as much as 1 million pounds ($1.2 million) a year. “I’d DJ’d at lots of acid house parties in the 80s and I always had a love of music.”
Now, he DJ’s on a radio station on weekends and plays regular club nights and festivals with the band. He said it’s not full time, but they’re getting more bookings, and the group is gearing up to release a new single -- a remix of Baby D’s 1990s hit “Let Me Be Your Fantasy.”
It’s not easy to match the high-flying salaries in finance. Terry Farr worked as a broker at RP Martin Holdings Ltd. before being tried and acquitted over Libor with Wilkinson. He now spends Fridays manning a stall in Brentwood, a small commuter town, selling plants and bulbs. Dressed in a brown flat cap, green jacket and jeans, he chats with the locals, knocking 50 pence off here and there for regulars.
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He splits the rest of the week between markets around Essex and London, and fulfilling gardening contracts at local businesses, with his springer spaniel, Lily, in tow. Farr, 45, said he makes about 10 percent of the six-figure salary he used to earn.
“Even though I was tried and found innocent, you’re tarred with that brush,” said Farr, who has returned to the sort of work he did with his father when growing up. “I do miss working in London. I miss that sort of buzz of the dealing room.”
Game Changer

Those cast adrift after the Libor scandal and the foreign-exchange manipulation probe that followed it are a tiny subset of the thousands of City workers who’ve lost their jobs since the financial crisis in 2008. The end of the debt-fueled banking boom ushered in a period of shrinking profits, heightened regulatory scrutiny and little tolerance for those accused of wrongdoing.
"Libor changed the game for the rehabilitation of a career in finance,” says Richard Burger, a lawyer at London firm RPC who used to work at the U.K. markets regulator. “Even if a person is exonerated, it’s often seen as too big a risk to take."

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