Cabbies Among First to See Ripples of Wall Street's Pain
Crashing markets mean fewer fares, smaller tips
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 20, 2008 2:13 PM CDT
A cab driver fills his taxi at a gas station in New York, Monday, May 12, 2008.   (AP Photo/Jin Lee)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – New York cabbies will tell you that their jobs are indicative of overall health of the economy—so they’re getting hammered right now. New York looks at one driver’s experience with the bubble-and-bust of recent years, with the halcyon days of bankers tossing him $40 for a $2.90 ride having degenerated into hours of cruising Wall Street, fruitlessly, for fares.

“Whenever I came here, I used to pick up a fare right away,” cabbie Pervaiz Waraich says in front of Goldman Sachs’ headquarters. Waraich has watched the crash first-hand—on the days of big market tumbles, many of his rides yell into their phones, slam doors and don’t tip. “I don’t think this economic crisis will end very soon,” he says.