Jérôme Kerviel, the 31-year-old French derivatives trader who cost Société Générale £7bn, was the new name on people’s lips last week.

Analysts believe it is unlikely the US Federal Reserve would have cut interest rates quite so readily if his unhedged futures trading had been uncovered earlier.

One analyst said it explained the bank's high volume selling and the previous week’s stock market tumble, and also that it showed that we weren't heading into recession.

Leslie Kent, analyst at JM Finn, said the last seven days were marked by volatility as investors were divided into believers and non-believers in terms of a recovery. He pointed to big swings at Berkeley and Travis Perkins.

The jittery market was exemplified by the fall in the share price of structural steel group Severfield-Rowen from 390p to 245p on the back of a trading update that had said the market was “softening”. Financial PRs: choose your words carefully.