A former human resources recruiter, Kohut is better known as Absolutely Abby, the gal ready and willing to tell job seekers the hard truth about what is preventing them from being hired.

Shes been pounding the pavement for two years speaking to job search groups at libraries, veterans associations, Ys and colleges across the country. But in order to keep the wheels on her RV rolling, she needs funding--$75,000 to be exact.

Up to this point, Abby has used personal savings (she and her husband sold their house to fund the tour), and sales from her book Absolutely Abbys 101 Job Search Secrets, teleseminars and private consulting. When she realized she wasnt earning enough to continue the tour, she turned to crowdfunding.

I would like to believe that the world is going to help with this because its really important, she said. Luckily she doesnt really need the entire worlds support, just 15,000 people willing to donate $5. Thats all it would take, and wed be done, she said.

While the sharks get a percentage of a business for their investment, campaign funders also get something for their money. In Abbys case, $40 would get your face in a mosaic on the hood of her car--or as the sole $15,000 contributor, your business would be featured on the truck along with other sponsorship perks. Even the $5 contributions receive something: Gratitude times five!

Abby knows the odds of meeting her funding goal are slim. According to The Verge, only one in 10 Indiegogo campaigns receive full funding. As of this writing, Abbys campaign, which ends Nov. 24, has raised just over $2,300.

I feel terribly nervous about funding, she said, adding that the cost of the tour is about $15,000 a month. However, she remains optimistic. Unlike some other crowdfunding platforms, Indiegogo has a fee-based option that allows campaigns that dont reach their goal to keep the funds they raised.

Well do what we can with whatever money is pledged, Abby said. If we raise half the funding, then well do half the tour.

I think Abbys campaign is a worthwhile cause. I coach recent college grads that are unemployed or underemployed, and I have several friends and family members who are struggling job seekers. I also like Abbys chutzpah. And for that reason, Im in.

Leon Shaulov, a senior portfolio manager at the Galleon Group, was preparing for the stock market to open on Oct. 16, 2009, when word spread that the firm’s founder, the hedge fund giant Raj Rajaratnam, had been arrested on insider trading charges.

In the days that followed, Mr. Shaulov and a skeleton crew of senior Galleon traders and portfolio managers worked tirelessly to unwind the hedge fund’s portfolio, jettisoning billions of dollars of stocks at fire-sale prices, ahead of what was sure to be a wave of investor redemptions that would swamp the firm.

But within a week, once the fund’s portfolio was largely liquidated, its more than 100 survivors faced a stark reality: Galleon was effectively out of business. Except for a small team, employees were handed separation agreements to sign and were told by Richard Schutte, the firm’s president, that there was no need for them to come to the office anymore.

Finding a job on Wall Street was tough after the financial crisis and next to impossible if your rÃsumà included a line that said “Galleon.” As photos of Mr. Rajaratnam in handcuffs multiplied worldwide, Galleon, once considered a prized client on Wall Street because of the huge stock-trading commissions it paid, turned toxic.

Even now, five years after the arrest of Mr. Rajaratnam, who is serving an 11-year sentence in a Massachusetts prison for trading on inside information, former Galleon portfolio managers and traders are reluctant to speak on the record about their efforts to rebuild their lives. Many are bitter about the experience because life after Galleon is not nearly as sweet as it was when they were at the fund. And some who worked at Galleon for only a short time are so worried about the taint that they have expunged mention of it from their rÃsumÃs.

“These are years of my life I am not getting back,” said one former Galleon portfolio manager who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the stain still associated with the Galleon name. “Even today, it impacts my professional life. A year ago, when I was going and interviewing, Galleon was a stopper.”

A few Galleon portfolio managers, like Peter Swartz, who managed a small portfolio of technology stocks and had worked at other firms before joining Galleon, were able to find jobs in the industry. Mr. Swartz joined the Fortress Investment Group several months after leaving Galleon and is a portfolio manager in its Asian Macro fund.

But many other Galleon executives followed the path that Mr. Shaulov took, with varying degrees of success.

In 2010, Mr. Shaulov, who was a senior portfolio manager of the Galleon Buccaneer’s fund, started his own hedge fund, Maplelane Capital, with less than $50 million, mostly from his personal savings. Galleon’s sudden demise had come at a terrible time for Mr. Shaulov. He was having a strong year — Buccaneer, a short-term trading fund run by Mr. Shaulov and others, was up nearly 14 percent as of the end of September — and, like many, he was counting on a big bonus after suffering a steep drop in pay during the financial crisis. Mr. Shaulov’s portfolio had actually outperformed that of his Galleon peers in 2008, losing only 9.4 percent compared with far bigger shortfalls at the Galleon flagship technology fund managed by Mr. Rajaratnam. (Buccaneer would have eked out a 0.27 percent gain in 2008 had it not been forced to write down the assets it held at Lehman Brothers, which collapsed in September.)

Mr. Shaulov’s trading prowess helped him grow. Though he started small, he now manages about $500 million in assets. He deploys the money he runs in a smattering of stocks, including Galleon’s specialty, technology stocks.

Ananth Muniyappa, a Galleon trader, headed to Wall Street, even as he was being enlisted as a possible witness in the government’s investigation. He was on the firm’s trading desk on the afternoon of Sept. 23, 2008, when a man whom prosecutors say was Rajat K. Gupta, a Goldman Sachs director, called his friend Mr. Rajaratnam and tipped him off about an imminent investment in the firm by Warren E. Buffett. Mr. Muniyappa ended up testifying at the trial of Mr. Gupta, who was convicted of insider trading and is serving a two-year sentence. In between preparatory meetings with prosecutors, Mr. Muniyappa worked as a derivatives and technology sector strategist at Nomura Securities for two years.

Then he struck out on his own, starting a technology company with a couple of partners called Writebot, a tool that enhances collaboration and productivity online. After more than two years at Writebot, Mr. Muniyappa told friends he is set to return to Wall Street soon.

Even former Galleon executives who left before Galleon imploded did not escape unscathed. Todd Deutsch departed in 2008 and set up his own investment company, Bascom Hill Partners.

But when the Galleon arrests — which included a senior McKinsey #038; Company partner, Anil Kumar, and an analyst, Danielle Chiesi — made headlines, Mr. Deutsch’s name was drawn into the fray. After all, he had been one of the fund company’s most successful managers, running the Captain’s Partners fund and the Captain’s Offshore fund.

He was never implicated in any wrongdoing, but like almost everyone else who managed money at Galleon, he received the inevitable questions from his investors when the Galleon scandal erupted.

A couple years ago, Mr. Deutsch decided to convert his hedge fund into a family office, focused on managing his personal wealth, so that he could spend more time with his children and devote his energies to pursuing business and charitable opportunities.



Time was, most people had access to a retirement account through their jobs, either because they belonged to a union or through an employer-provided pension plan.

Those days are gone. Advocates claim 600,000 Connecticut workers cant save for retirement through work.

So what becomes of the proverbial three-legged stool that is supposed to provide comfort for us in our old age? You know: personal savings, Social Security and an employer-provided pension?

One possibility is that the next generation of oldsters will live in greater poverty than the current one, in part because it takes discipline to save for a retirement that seems so far in the future when there are bills to pay today and in part because many people blew through their savings, after layoffs and foreclosures during the Great Recession.



Piggy banks are passe. The traditional coin container that children used to keep their wealth has lost its relevance, with banks opening accounts for children.

Banks are catching them young, literally, say industry officials. In fact, these days, banks are not even sparing new-born. Just-born kids are account holders in many banks.

State Bank of India (SBI), for instance, has many new-borns as account holders. Kotak Mahindra Bank, on the other hand, has a 12-day boy as their youngest account holder. SBI is conducting classes in schools asking children to move their piggy banks from the home to banks. Banks will help the piggy bank balances to grow by paying an interest 4.5%, same as saving bank accounts on them.

Ever since Reserve Bank of India (RBI) permitted children of 10 years and above to sign uniformly to start their own savings bank account banks.

Most banks such as SBI, Kotak Mahindra Bank, HDFC Bank and ICICI Bank have launched their individual children plans.

SBI has begun imparting a few lessons in personal savings. They are conducting classes for on banking for school children, teaching the young students on banking and on the need for savings. A senior SBI official told dna, We are getting a good response both from the urban areas and the response from rural areas is also encouraging.

SBI has two kinds of accounts which has a specialised account for kids who are even just born called the Pehla Kadam which is opened with the guardian when the kid is just born. Pehli Udaan is where 10 years who can sign uniformly are given an account of their own along with a debit card facility. Children have an ATM limit of Rs 5,000 and mobile banking limit of Rs 200.

Banks are also bundling insurance products with these accounts. For example, SBI has a child account with an insurance support, and planing for higher studies with sum assured of Rs 20 lakh. Launched in many schools, students are handed over account kits. Students were also handed over account kits containing their personalised debit cards, passbooks, cheque books, among others.

Kotak Mahindra Bank was one among the early launchers with the bank having special children account over a year back.

Sumit Bali, executive vice-president, Kotak Mahindra Bank, said, We are getting an encouraging response with the bank adding 35,000 accounts a month. These accounts come with recurring deposits and systematic investment plan facility. All our account holders are given a ID card and a debit card. The recurring deposits are for 36 months with an interest rate of 8.5%

HDFC Bank offers advantage account for kids 7 to 18 years of age with ATM offerings but only with permission of parent or guardian. The ATM withdrawal limit is Rs 2,500 and daily shopping limit is Rs 10,000. The account comes with free education insurance cover of Rs 1 lakh in the event of the death of the parent or guardian through vehicular accident by road, rail or air to safeguard the future of the child. Once the balance in the kids advantage account reaches Rs 35,000 the amount in excess of Rs 25,000 will automatically be transferred to a fixed deposit if money maximiser (sweep out) facility has been opted for by the account holder.

ICICI Bank also recently launched an account for children called Smart Star to be operated by minors over 10 years of age. Account holders will get a personalised cheque book and a debit card with a picture of their choice with access to banking channels such as ATM, mobile and internet banking.