Once, he earned tens of thousands a month; now, ex-broker Andrew Michael Teo works as a security guard for $50 a day.
The 46-year-old told Shin Min Daily News that he has been a security guard since 2008. He has worked as permanent staff, and also on a part-time basis for months at a time for three different companies.
Michael revealed that he has more than 10 years of experience in the finance industry, and eight of which was in Taiwan.
When he went to Taiwan in 1995, he helped clients trade in bonds, currencies, and equities, earning about NT$3 million ($126,300) a year in commission, or about S$10,000 a month.
During the financial crisis of 1997, he managed to buck the trend, even making a profit of NT$2 million (S$84,200) in July 1997 when the market crashed.
In 2003, his father fell seriously ill and he returned to Singapore. Back home, he tried working as a business consultant for a year.
After leaving that job, he was unable to find suitable employment for two whole years. He told Shin Min that the financial industry here prefers young graduates with fresh ideas, to experienced traders.
"After a while, it didn't feel right not to be working. I recalled that my father once worked as a security guard, so I wanted to experience what he went through," said Michael.