February 2012

  • Conference On Issues Affecting U.S. Capital Markets Competitiveness


    And Now A Clever Bit Of Volcker Rule Lobbying

    You can – but shouldn’t – read some overheated complaints about how bankster lobbying weakened the Volcker Rule from I guess its platonic form of “anyone who does anything that, in hindsight, looks sort of like prop trading, will be shot.”* One problem with that is that it rests on a somewhat crude theory of […]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 7:04 PM
  • larry-summer-glare


    Nearly 40,000 People Preemptively Let Obama Know They Think Larry Summers Sucks

    Is Larry Summers going to get the nomination for World Bank president? It’s unclear at this time but lest Obama be seriously considering him for the gig, a bunch of people would like to put it out there that the former Treasury Secretary would be a “terrible pick.” In 24 hours over 37,000 people have […]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 5:45 PM
  • News

    This Is A Picture Of Tyra Banks Posing With Her Degree From Harvard Business School

    Related: “A slideshow of me raising my hand in class” [@tyrabanks, earlier]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 4:59 PM
  • News

    Dealbreaker Career Center

    If you’re considering a move, a top multi-strategy New York hedge fund is looking for an investor relations/marketing associate. Or perhaps you’d be better as a managing director at a distressed debt and private equity firm in Dallas? [DBCC]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 4:59 PM
  • dick_fuld.03


    Dick Fuld Needs Your Help!

    Earlier this afternoon we were thinking it’d been a while since we’d gotten an update on what’s been a’ poppin’ with Dick Fuld. Was he still plotting his comeback? Had he gotten over not being invited to Erin Callan’s wedding? Questions needed to be answered. Luckily, Charlie Gasparino recently spent some time tailing Richard and […]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 3:09 PM
  • mark zuckerberg 23feb12

    Banks, News

    Facebook Will Take Free Money From Banks But Don’t Expect It To Show Any Gratitude

    The Wall Street Journal today discovered that universal banks that lend money to companies for cheap tend to want investment banking business in return for that lending and I guess that’s a scandal:

    As the market for technology IPOs revs up and the biggest banks seek to capitalize on the size of their balance sheets, the practice of selecting underwriters that also provided loans is coming under focus, spurred by Facebook’s IPO process.

    Critics of the practice say the choices aren’t accidental and reflect the “you-scratch-my-back-I-scratch-yours” way that Wall Street works.

    Bankers, for their part, say they aren’t allowed to make loans on the condition that they receive other business, but borrowers can use the loans as a factor in choosing underwriters. Some bankers say that lending is just one of the many services they offer companies.

    At Facebook, the credit line played a role in the batting order for underwriters, said a banker who worked on an underwriting pitch to the company.

    When I was young and naive and pitching for underwriting business against banks that did lots of lending, I always thought that banks “aren’t allowed to make loans on the condition that they receive other business, but borrowers can use the loans as a factor in choosing underwriters” thing was ripe for a scandal. I still sort of think that: I just do not believe that no client coverage banker has ever said “we’ll be in your credit facility but only if you promise us underwriting or M&A business.” (Some people agree with me!) And, as the Journal notes, that would be a criminal violation of the antitrust laws, which is unspeakably weird but there you go.

    But if you ask a banker who has been carefully and recently briefed on anti-tying regulations, he will probably tell you something like “we don’t demand underwriting business to provide a loan. Companies demand loans to get underwriting business.” And, as the Journal says, that’s not illegal.

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 1:31 PM
  • U.S. President Obama congratulates Medal of Freedom recipient Buffett during ceremony at White House in Washington


    Warren Buffett Is A Huge Fan Of The Buffett Rule

    The Oracle of Omaha has given the eponymous piece of legislation two thumbs up.

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 12:57 PM
  • News

    Steve Cohen Hedges Dodgers Deal With Mets Stake, Order Of Fleece-Lined Jock Straps For The Whole Team

    The Mets have received commitments from billionaire hedge-fund investor Steve Cohen and six other investors to purchase $20 million minority shares in their embattled club, sources familiar with the deal told the Daily News on Wednesday. The team expects to secure commitments for three remaining shares in the near future, and hopes to complete the […]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 10:49 AM

    Opening Bell

    Opening Bell: 02.23.12

    RBS Sees Widened Loss (WSJ) The bank said Thursday that it slumped to a 2011 full-year net loss of nearly £2 billion ($3.13 billion) as the euro-zone crisis continued to weigh on its investment banking division and restructuring costs hammered the U.K. bank’s bottom line. RBS which is 83%-owned by the U.K. government, saw full-year […]

    / Feb 23, 2012 at 8:37 AM
  • Write-Offs

    Write-Offs: 02.22.12

    $$$ Schapiro Questions Role of High-Frequency Traders [WSJ]

    $$$ Morgan Stanley veterans plan advisory boutique Dean Bradley Osborne or DBO Partners [FT]

    $$$ Charlie Gasparino: Preet Bharara plans to profit from taking credit for insider trading prosecutions [FBN]

    $$$ New York Federal Reserve Said to Plan Sale of AIG-Linked Mortgage Bonds [Bloomberg]

    $$$ UWS lawyer’s wife paid $42,388 so husband could meet Knicks’ Lin, take home jersey [NYP]

    $$$ A leading private equity firm is looking for an Energy associate [eFinancial Careers]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 6:55 PM
  • News

    One Last Greek CDS Post Before It All Goes Poof

    One of the side benefits of Greece taking whatever somewhat irreversible steps it is now taking is that something will happen to CDS written on existing Greek debt and that will mean that we can stop talking about what will happen to CDS written on existing Greek debt and start talking about more interesting things like quasi-CDS written by the EFSF on shaky Eurozone government debt.

    For now, though, we’ve got at least a few more weeks of surprisingly and unsurprisingly ill-informed fretting that triggering the $4bn of Greek CDS will Bring Down The Entire Global Financial System. That seems sort of silly because notionals aren’t that big, mark-to-market collateral is mostly being posted, and at this point the marks are pretty close to what you’ll get from Greece so it doesn’t look like there’s tons of unknown unrecognized losses lurking out there.

    On the other hand, we’re mostly through with the speculation that not triggering Greek CDS will Prove That CDS Is Worthless and thereby Bring Down The Entire Global Financial System, so that’s nice. The reason that’s mostly over is that it sure looks like Greek CDS will in fact trigger, as Athens has moved to adopt a collective action clause that will flip the Greek restructuring from “voluntary, heh heh heh” to “involuntary” and thus trigger the ISDA restructuring event definition. You can argue that the mechanics of the cash settlement auction will mildly screw CDS holders but I’m not so sure, and in any case this is pretty solidly in the category of derivatives nerdery rather than Bring Down The etc.

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 6:29 PM
  • mikemcquearyhouse


    Former Penn State Football Coach Would Love For You To Get Bullish On Happy Valley Real Estate

    Mike McQueary, the embattled eyewitness who testified he saw Jerry Sandusky with a young boy in a locker-room shower in 2002, has put his State College house up for sale. Kissinger, Bigatel and Brower Realtors are handling any potential transaction with the house, valued at $575,000 [SC]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 5:18 PM
  • tyrabanksharvardbusinessschool


    Tyra Banks Reflects On Time At Harvard Business Schoool

    On February 17, former model-cum-entrepreneur Tyra Banks became a graduate of Harvard Business School. What did Banks learn during her time there and, more importantly, what wisdom is she now equipped to impart on the current and future business leaders of the world? Glad you asked.

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 4:13 PM
  • News

    Robert Shiller Has 1/1,000,000,000,000th Of Greece He’d Like To Sell You

    Here’s a delightful idea that is also a nice piece of synergy. Apparently Yale economist and half-a-housing-index Robert Shiller has been floating this idea since 2009 but I just saw it today in a new Harvard Business Review piece (via Counterparties): Corporations use a combination of debt and equity to finance their investments and operations. […]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 2:47 PM
  • News

    When Life Gives You Lemons, You Give Out Rebates

    Faithful Assistant passed me a cellphone. “It’s for you…it’s a woman.” My stomach knotted. Women calling a bookie’s office? Bad news. I don’t have any female customers, but they’re usually a headache: most of the time they’re not betting for themselves, but for some sharp guy who wants to stay anonymous. If they’re not customers, […]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 1:55 PM
  • News

    Patricia Cohen Has Been Suing Her Ex-Husband For Over 20 Years, Has No Plans To Throw In The Towel Now

    Steven Cohen, the billionaire founder of SAC Capital Advisors LP, hid $5.5 million from his ex-wife during their 1990 divorce, her lawyer argued before a federal appeals panel in seeking to reverse the dismissal of her lawsuit. Howard Foster, a Chicago-based lawyer for Patricia Cohen, said Steven Cohen didn’t include the money, which Foster said […]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 12:58 PM
  • warrenbuffett-260x301


    Warren Buffett Is Working Chris Christie’s Last Nerve

    As you may have noticed, when New Jersey Governor Chris Christie doesn’t like a position someone has taken, he generally responds with some variation of telling the person taking it to go fuck themselves. Usually he adds little flourishes, like exaggeratedly rolling his eyes, or storming out of the room, or mocking people for being […]

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 11:49 AM
  • International Monetary Fund Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn appears in a Reuters interview in Washington

    Opening Bell

    Opening Bell: 02.22.12

    Fitch Downgrades Greece (WSJ)
    Fitch Ratings downgraded Greece’s credit rating to C from triple-C Wednesday after confirmation of the country’s second bailout package, which includes a debt exchange that will force bondholders to take a loss on their holdings of Greek debt. “The rating action is in line with Fitch’s statement on 6 June 2011, which outlined its rating approach to a sovereign-debt exchange,” the ratings company said. Fitch said it will lower its rating on the country’s sovereign bonds to “restricted default” upon the completion of the debt exchange aimed at reducing the country’s debt burden.

    / Feb 22, 2012 at 8:43 AM

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