PONZI

How Madoff Was Made

Here’s something new: Bernard Madoff was so afraid of curves that he drank out of a square glass. “He was paranoid about them,” an employee of his tells New York Magazine in a long piece that pairs the story of Madoff’s rise with that of J. Ezra Merkin, who managed one of Madoff’s feeder funds. Madoff almost toppled in the 90s, when the SEC ordered him to return some investors money, but many of the clients chose to keep it invested. “The irony is that by then, Bernie Madoff didn’t need the money. His legitimate and heavily regulated market-making business tossed off cash. He executed as many as 15 percent of all the NYSE’s trades.”