Perfumed steamrollers and powerful owls in Westpac bank bill case

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One of the lighter elements of the court case between the Australian Securities and Investments Commission and Westpac over alleged rigging of the bank bill swap rate is the bevy of nicknames it has revealed for Westpac’s traders.

Some are a bit unimaginative.

Patrick Stokes, a trader, was “The Sheriff.”

Daniel Park, oddly, was “The Bench.”

Colin Roden, among the more feared and influential Westpac traders, turns out to be known as “The Rat”, and someone at Commonwealth Bank, as yet unnamed, is “Powerful Owl.”

But the bar was raised when Sophie Johnston, now in Westpac’s treasury division in London, took the stand, whereupon she was asked why her colleagues call her “The Perfumed Steamroller”.

“I wasn’t making the joke,” she told the federal court in Melbourne. “So I don’t necessarily know what they meant by steamroller.”