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Judge Rules It's OK To Treat Coworkers Like Frat Pledges As Long As Everyone Is Included

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Robert Bou-Simon--who sued BGC Partners last year over hazing rituals that included a bizarre wet-tee shirt contest and the fallout from refusing to participate in it-- learned this the hard way.

A London broker who said he was bullied at BGC Partners Inc. (BGCP) lost his lawsuit against the company as a judge ruled he gave at least as good as he got on a trading floor that was rife with insults and abuse. Robert Bou-Simon was “not the only object of ridicule and insult or the sole victim of the abuse,” said employment tribunal Judge Bernice Elgot, rejecting the unfair dismissal claim. He “indulged in it himself, and often gave worse than he got,” Elgot said in a ruling dated Aug. 13 and made available last week. Bou-Simon, former head of BGC’s basis swaps desk, said the bullying started a few days after he joined the company in February 2012 when he refused to take part in an initiation ritual called “The Run,” where brokers are doused with water after making their first trade. He argued BGC managers and colleagues orchestrated a campaign against him, forcing him to quit in June 2013, according to the ruling.

Ex-BGC Broker Who Gave Good as He Got Loses Bullying Suit [Bloomberg]

Earlier: At London Brokerage, “Only Real Men” Douse Each Other In Water: Lawsuit