Marketplace Scratch Pad

Spy versus Tie

Scott Jagow May 28, 2009

Guess where the CIA is making its latest recruitment push? Wall Street. The New York Post says says the agency has started advertising on Bloomberg radio, hoping to land out-of-work financial suits, like investment bankers and hedge funders. The CIA’s hoping to use their “intelligence for the work of a nation.”

From the Post:

The $160,000 salary is probably a huge pay cut for many of the disgraced masters of the universe.

Private interviews are set for June 22 at a secret Manhattan location. Don’t call, the CIA says, just e-mail your information.

With Obama expanding his reach into the business world to carry out his economic recovery, he’s demanding more insider expertise from financial pros in the trenches, sources said.

The agency says it needs Wall Street’s guidance for everything from tracking where Afghan drug traffickers park their billions to which economies are the most vulnerable to manipulation.

I’m guessing $160,000 is the high end, based on some of the job descriptions at the CIA’s website. But hey, it’s a job — right, bankers?

This is part of a larger campaign to recruit for the CIA. Besides reaching out to the Street, the agency is also hoping to hire more minorities.

I’d think some Wall Street types would fit in rather well at the CIA. Gawker has this comparison:

CIA: Use “intelligence” as a euphemism for doing who knows what.
Bankers: Use “finance” as a euphemism for doing who knows what.

CIA: Train to ingratiate themselves with sources of information.
Bankers: Train to ingratiate themselves with sources of revenue.

CIA: Did cocaine with Colombians and spent all night partying with hookers in a drug lord’s villa. It was a mission.
Bankers: Did cocaine with Colombians and spent all night partying with hookers in a Murray Hill co-op. It was Tuesday.

CIA: Have been known to foster regime change in far-flung foreign countries to bolster the interests of the US military-industrial complex.
Bankers: Ditto.

More tonight on Marketplace….

There’s a lot happening in the world.  Through it all, Marketplace is here for you. 

You rely on Marketplace to break down the world’s events and tell you how it affects you in a fact-based, approachable way. We rely on your financial support to keep making that possible. 

Your donation today powers the independent journalism that you rely on. For just $5/month, you can help sustain Marketplace so we can keep reporting on the things that matter to you.  

Need some Econ 101?

Our new Marketplace Crash Course is here to help. Sign-up for free, learn at your own pace.