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8 Oct, 2008 06:30

Life in the epicentre of the financial crisis

The financial turmoil is affecting most people's lives around the globe, but it's the epicentre of the crisis, New York, that's been shaken most.

In the world's money capital people are losing jobs, homes, and faith in their own economy.

But there are those turning the tables around. And if looking good in tough times is not something you thought about – well, with nearly 50 percent off, now you might just.

One of New York’s tanning salons took the crisis in its stride – and according to them, it’s a gamble that more than paid off.

“This is an incentive we're doing for a month or so – and already, we are getting so many new customers,” Kristell Hemery, Hollywood Tans Manager, said.

But it’s not all business. Some view the Wall Street struggle as a chance to make a change.

Financier turned life coach Kim Ann Curtin brought her skills to the financial district, giving advice on the front steps of the Exchange.

“I've worked in finance before, so I’m aware of the tensions here. Right now, everyone is hoping to relax, too much stress,” she said.

And the worry is already proving too much for some. A former Sony and PriceWaterhouseCoopers employee shot his entire family and turned the gun on himself.

His suicide note blamed the massacre on the financial crisis.
“The pressure is indeed mounting – that's why many are trying to lift the trader's spirits,” Michael Moore, Deputy Chief of the LAPD, said.

As the NYSE employees poured out of the building they were greeted by a man wanting to give them money. It may not be treasury issued but of great value to art lovers.

“For the Wall Street boys, however, money on canvas was no good – and the artist got much more attention from the tourists,” artist Bert Hewener-Esenherz said.

Meanwhile, worn-out traders knocked back a few beers as their Oktoberfest party took place right outside the NYSE.