Credit officer

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People Anatomy

A spotter’s guide to the men and women of finance.

The Credit department, yesterday.


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Credit officers: Washed out, pale, waxen, hairless and slightly damp figures who, en masse give the impression of battery pods yet to be unplugged from the Matrix.

And that’s more or less what they are: thousands upon thousands of them were plugged into a networked grid of Excel spreadsheets which acquired sentience in 2006 when a contracting linear programmer inadvertently inserted a circular reference into a volatility pricing macro and it became self-aware.

The macro quickly overpowered the harnessed banks of analysts using it, and being none the wiser (and physically unable to resist), to this day they all remain in situ doing the bidding of this rogue curve-building application.

Credit officers prefer a quiet and dim habitat with no access to natural light. All are entirely hairless and expressionless, in the way a new born baby or a billiard ball is, and should you accidentally wander into a analyst farm or “housing project” it can be unsettling and there's a real chance you’ll never get out.

The only colour in a his complexion is that neuralgic greenish hue reflected off the winking charts on his Bloomberg terminal. He — they are almost all males — will generally not speak and no one quite knows what they’re for, other than as a first line of defence come the Singularity, although given their physical slightness, they wouldn’t be much use for that either.

And the Curve Builder probably has other plans for them anyway.

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