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Opinion

SG vindicated on Facebook

The internet campaign to raise €5 billion to save the career of rogue trader Jérôme Kerviel, launched on social networking site Facebook, has got off to a slow start, with only 2,095 members so far having pledged €1 each towards the cause.

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Although it is doubtful whether "le banque du rugby" and its shareholders would take Kerviel back even if his supporters managed to raise the funds to make up for the losses for which he has been blamed, Société Générale can at least take comfort that its own rescue campaign, in the form of a rights issue, is off to a better start, having been fully underwritten by the Morgans JP and Stanley.

If anything, the "If 5 billion persons join this group & give €1 we save Jérôme Kerviel’s career" group has helped vindicate some of the bank’s internal procedures, particularly recruitment.

One group member, who pledged "...10 euros because you’re French :) 5 millions French may be sufficient!!!" and who says "F*ck the Sogé" also complains of having had his applications for an internship ignored by the bank, thereby proving that its human resources department, famed for selecting only the brightest mathematicians in France, has operational controls beyond reproach.

Although the uncharitable might fault the HR department for hiring Kerviel in the first place, they weren’t the only ones to have been impressed by his intelligence – 2,937 people have joined the "Jérôme Kerviel should be awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics" group, making it the largest site dedicated to Kerviel on Facebook, far larger than the "Jérôme Kerviel IS MY BOYFRIEND" group with 68 members. Perhaps unsurprisingly, that group has many times more members than the "Official Jérôme Kerviel IS MY BOYFRIEND" group, which has only 10.

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