Semi-Official Symbol of Woe

Same trader shows up in Wall Street crash photos

Not again!

So we wailed as we flipped through the Nov. 6 New York Times business section.

Let us explain.

The Audit took a look at the photography of the financial crisis a few weeks ago. We gave The New York Times credit for skill on that front, but we also had a general complaint: Across the financial press, we see not only too many photos of stock traders but too many photos of the same traders.

One stock trader in particular has appeared disconcertingly often. To give a prominent example, here she is in an AP photo that ran on the front page of the Financial Times, among other places, as the financial crisis bubbled over in mid September:

So we were dismayed when we saw her yet again, in the Nov. 6 NYT:

The trader is not quoted in the piece, but rather—in a fashion typical of articles on market fluctuations—serves as a generic image of Wall Street anxiety. The title of the piece is “Stocks Fall as Service Industries Weaken.”

We must admit, we didn’t initially recognize our familiar trader behind her monitor, but the Times gives us her name in the caption—minus, we might add, any further identifying information, which might make you wonder if you should know her.

We can we say? It’s odd. We’ll keep our eyes peeled for this increasingly familiar face of Wall Street woe.

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Elinore Longobardi is a Fellow and staff writer of The Audit, the business-press section of Columbia Journalism Review.