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Secret Handshakes Greet Frat Brothers On Wall Street

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Conor Hails, head of the University of Pennsylvania’s Sigma Chi chapter, was in a Philadelphia hotel ballroom last month for a Barclays Plc (BARC) recruiting reception. A friend pointed out a banker from their fraternity. Hails, 20, approached with a secret handshake.

“We exchanged a grip, and he said, ‘Every Sigma Chi gets a business card,’” Hails recalled. “We’re trying to create Sigma Chi on Wall Street, a little fraternity on Wall Street.”

As students vie for 2014 internships in an industry where 22-year-olds can make more than $100,000 a year, interviews with three dozen fraternity members showed a network whose Wall Street alumni guide resumes to the tops of stacks, reveal interview questions with recommended answers, offer applicants secret mottoes and support chapters facing crackdowns.

That’s one reason men continue to dominate on Wall Street, where no woman has run a big bank. General Motors Co. (GM) announced Dec. 10 it would make Mary Barra the auto industry’s first female chief executive officer, the same day research firm Catalyst Inc. showed women holding about one in eight executive roles in U.S. finance.

The fraternity pipeline helps undergraduates beat odds three times steeper than Princeton University’s record-low acceptance rate, with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) choosing 350 investment-banking interns this year from 17,000 applicants.

Who needs talent when you've got mates.

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ahh yes. the funny handshakes.

what happens when the group you think does funny handhakes ,has a clandestine group WITHIN the group doing REALLY funny handshakes?

do you think the guys doing the standard funny handshake feel a bit left out?

stands to reason doesn't it?

..they thought they were all big and clever, and lorded it over everybody..thinking they were top dog.

..suddenly they find out they are nowhere near the top of the food chain?

lets throw a real curve-ball into the mix.

lets assume now that the guys doing really, really funny handhakes, were aware of the sect doing really funny handshakes trying to rule the roost..and therefore progress on to their own "super rite of handshake", and so assumed positions of the guys only doing standard handshakes or moderately bemusing handshakes from several years back, and invented the really funny handshake bit and all successive levels from really really funny, to utterly bemusing handshakes as the "trick step"...and an "intelligence gathering exercise.....namely only having one or two "placemen" in each of the further rites as informants.

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