City dealing screens may be bathed in red, the private investor on strike and the FT-SE All Share Index moving south, but in the real world things are different. Those who really know what is happening - the directors of Britain's quoted companies - have been busy over the past six months buying their own shares in far greater numbers than at any time since the start of recession in 1990.
Every Saturday the Financial Times publishes a list of the week's directors' dealings. Here, the number of director sales has exceeded director purchases only once since the end of May. And it is not just the directors of what are regarded as safe, companies. Neville Buch, for example, of Blenheim Group, recently bought £315,000 worth of shares in his exhibitions business - despite the fact that in the past year they had underperformed the market by 32%. Tracking directors' dealings has been called the only legal form of insider dealing. Wiser heads in the City should perhaps take note.