What Christmas gift do you get the banker who is rich enough to buy anything he or she wants, and probably already has?
This definitely falls in the category of an increasingly popular meme of “white people problems”, but more accurately should be described as rich people problems. It is a taxing issue, but fortunately for those of you who have left your Christmas shopping for that special banker in your life till the last minute, we have come up with some suggestions.
What would Christmas be without a traditional board game designed to cause an irretrievable breakdown in family and marital relationships? And now for all those bankers who get withdrawal from being away from the trading desk for more than 12 hours on the trot, the board game equivalent of methadone.
The designers say their goal “is to man up everyone around here up a bit…while splitting infinitives and preaching the joys of making money because we know that free markets, unlike free love, music, art, or good intentions, really can change the world. For the better, of course. And that’s exactly what we plan on doing — one tongue-in-cheek, Darwinian, money-loving game at a time.”
The standard version costs $50 but we know you’ll all go straight for the $75 deluxe edition.
Bankers are notorious for being married to their work and chasing the mighty dollar, leaving them with no time for cost-centres like wives and girlfriends. While they might like to think of themselves as masters of the universe, the rest of the world thinks of them as sad, lonely losers especially at this time of year.
But help will soon be at hand. Literally. A smartphone app creates a virtual girlfriend, sending ‘texts’ that create the appearance of a real-life girlfriend. A mere snip at £49.99 per month, which, let’s face it, is much cheaper than the average date, Invisible Girlfriend will put paid to all those awkward questions and sideways eyes about your singledom.
No news on whether the app developers have come up with an Invisible Boyfriend yet.
If the thrill of the deal or the nerve-wracking tension of betting against the market are starting to feel a bit humdrum, take the blood pressure up a notch or two with a survival course run by television’s wilderness Rambo, Bear Grylls.
Not for the faint-hearted – seriously (you’ll need to pass a gruelling fitness test which in itself is a little bit worrisome) – the 24-hour course promises “to hurt a little bit”. And if you survive it, the five-day challenge awaits.
Gift certificates can be purchased.
Investment banks might all be scrambling to ensure their interns don’t overwork themselves, but veterans know that banking isn’t for sissies, and there will be times when you have to pull all-nighters to get a deal done. Many a banker will regale you with stories about they worked for days on the trot, kept awake by coffee, Redbull and the thought of a massive bonus at the end of the year.
Now you can work and get at least an hour’s sleep a day without sacrificing any billable hours with the Podtime Sleeping Pod – which bears an uncanny resemblance to an MRI machine – for a mere £1,375 which is cheaper than a night at the Dorchester Hotel.
Particularly useful for bankers who qualify for gift suggestion #2
5. Hermes Birkin handbag
The ultimate in fashionable investments that really do deliver a hefty return, the Birkin – named by Hermes for actress Jane Birkin – is called the most sought-after bag in the world.
New versions of the real deal are released infrequently, creating pent-up demand for the product. Pre-owned versions sell for between $7,000 to $137,500 on Portero.com, and another recently fetched $150,000 at an auction. It is the ultimate investment in gorgeousness, and yes, we know, it is only a handbag.
If your beloved banker’s tastes run to the more cerebral, nothing beats a first edition of the book that was both guidebook and soothsayer for the state of the financial world today. Smith recognised that self-interest was the ultimate driving force, but also acknowledged the system’s downfall.
“Our merchants and masters complain much of the bad effects of high wages in raising the price and lessening the sale of goods. They say nothing concerning the bad effects of high profits. They are silent with regard to the pernicious effects of their own gains. They complain only of those of other people.”
Only 2,000 first editions exist, and a recent auction saw one go for nearly $90,000.
Nothing says ‘I love you’ more than buying your darling a private performance by a big name musical artist so that it can be splashed all over Facebook to friends and acquaintances who didn’t crack the nod to the party.
But expect to shell out a minimum of five figures in a real currency (sterling or dollars) for Katherine Jenkins to yodel an aria or two, or Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour to remind one of the bleeding heart rebel they used to be before becoming a bankster.
Or you can hire a member of the Kardashian klan for a selfie and to mingle with guests at the next soiree. Khanye not inkluded.
Travelling at the very pointy end of the plane but forced to stand in the same queues as the poor slobs in cattle class? Such horrors (again, white people’s problems, see #1) are now no longer necessary if you purchase your pre-nupped life-partner an annual membership to a concierge service.
Join the likes of famous celebs and royalty who are ushered through special VIP channels at airports, or who have hot-and-cold running staff on tap to organise front row seats at the Paris Fashion Show, red carpet access, and a range of other services that mere mortals can only dream about. All for a modest $18,000 a year.
Your Master or Mistress of the Universe needs the recognition he or she deserves, and what could be more fitting that a custom-made piece of furniture for the house on the Peak in Hong Kong/the chalet in Aspen/the cabana in Hawaii/or the pied-à-terre in London’s Holland Park.
Live out your Gothic fantasies with a replica iron throne from the hugely popular Game of Thrones TV show. For only $30,000 you can rule the Seven Kingdoms with the same ruthlessness you rule the trading floor. Just don’t change your name to Ned.
Planning to splurge some wedge on a new runaround but can’t make up your mind which one? Well, with a VeryFirstTo gift, you can now drive a different supercar every week for a year.
Choices include Aston Martin, Bugatti, Bentley, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Lotus, Maserati, McClaren, Porsche and TVR.
For £245,900 – or about what you’d pay for a new Lambo, you get to tool around in 52 different supercars. Price does not cover speeding fines.