The 5 Dumbest Things on Wall Street: Jan 21

5. UBS Restyles Its Standards

Former Yankees owner George Steinbrenner had a few rules about the appearance of his players, mainly no beards or shaggy hair. He wanted his boys to be clean cut.

Turns out, Steinbrenner had nothing on UBS ( UBS) when it comes to dictating style standards to employees.

According to the Associated Press, UBS has a more than 40-page tome detailing precisely how their employees should look, act and even eat when reporting for duty. The helpful guide delves deep, explaining that underwear should be skin-colored and that employees shouldn't eat garlic or onions. It even guides women on their makeup and perfume choices.

That makes sense. After all, when we think fashion, our minds go immediately to the Swiss. There's, uh, Ikea, right? No, that's Sweden. Oh well.

UBS employees can breathe a sigh of relief though. Things are going to be loosening up. UBS said this week that it was revising its style guide, turning it into what the AP described as a "pared-down booklet with more general guidelines on how to impress customers with a polished presence and sense of Swiss precision and decorum."

Uh, booklet?

We think UBS may be overthinking this just a tad. Why not go all the way and get it down to one page. Couldn't you just tell bankers that they should, you know, dress like bankers? It also seems like the majority of these style tips are aimed at preventing any of the major senses from getting stirred. We guess having your workers appear like automatons or just another drone in the hive is supposed to make clients feel secure. But if the financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we'd be fine with bankers wearing neon ties and eating garlic sandwiches if it meant they were actually more careful with our money.

TheStreet Says: Why do we have the feeling there's no such thing as a casual Friday at UBS?

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