As Rome burns

Fiddling as Rome burns. Rearranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic. These and other edge-of-the-abyss clichés came to mind during the course of the TradeTechWest 2008 conference held on 16 and 17 September in San Francisco.

Inauspiciously preceded by a series of jaw-dropping developments - Lehman's collapse, Bank of America's acquisition of Merrill Lynch, and the US government takeover of American International Group - the conference's series of panels and speeches focused on buy-side

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