Opening Bell

Opening Bell: 11.02.12

Economy Adds 171,000 Jobs (WSJ)
U.S. payrolls increased by a seasonally adjusted 171,000 jobs last month, the Labor Department said Friday. The politically important unemployment rate, obtained by a separate survey of U.S. households, rose one-tenth of a percentage point to 7.9%. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires expected a gain of 125,000 in payrolls and a 7.9% jobless rate.

Hedge Fund Cashes In On Greek Bonds (Reuters)
London-based hedge fund Adelante Asset Management has made a 70 percent gain on a sale of Greek bonds, showing the potential for big profits from betting on a recovery in the fortunes of a country effectively off-limits to investors a few months ago…Since the restructuring, Greek government bond prices have strengthened, allowing Adelante to sell them for around 24 cents on the euro, having bought them for around 14 cents in June, the company said. A Greek government bond maturing in 2042, for example, is currently trading at around 20.8 cents on the euro, Thomson Reuters data shows. Other hedge funds have made similar bets. Third Point, a high profile New York hedge fund, for example, has been a significant buying of cut-price Greek bonds.

RBS Eyes Libor Settlement Soon (WSJ)
RBS wants to seal a settlement with regulators over its alleged rigging of key interest rates in the coming months, as the part state-owned bank looks to draw a line under the scandal. Speaking to reporters at the bank’s third-quarter results presentation, Chief Executive Stephen Hester said he would be “disappointed” if he couldn’t provide details on a settlement by February. “We are up for settling with all and everyone as soon as they are ready. But each regulator has to satisfy itself that it has all the facts,” he said.

Deutsche Bank Faces Top Surcharge as FSB Shuffles Tiers (Bloomberg)
Deutsche Bank would be required to hold more capital and Bank of America Corp.’s burden stands to be reduced as global regulators shuffled the competitive balance among the world’s biggest banks. Citigroup, HSBC and JPMorgan join Deutsche Bank as firms that will be targeted for a capital surcharge of 2.5 percent, according to an updated list published yesterday by the Financial Stability Board. The change means Bank of America already exceeds requirements, while Deutsche Bank would be more than 2 percentage points below the new minimum of 9.5 percent. “That limits earnings potential for Citigroup, JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank compared to Bank of America, all other things being equal, so it’s certainly a competitive advantage for them,” said David Kass, a professor at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.

Short-Sellers of Europe Set to Be Unmasked (CNBC)
The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), the EU regulator, has issued new rules on the short-selling of securities indicating that anyone with short positions of greater than 0.2 percent in an EU company’s shares must report it to regulators. Positions of more than 0.5 percent will be publicly released, naming both the company and the short-seller. Public disclosure is triggered any time that level is hit with each 0.1 percent increase or decrease after that.

NYSE Open For Business Shows Wall Street Still Vulnerable (Bloomberg)
The Securities and Exchange Commission may consider whether exchanges’ emergency regimens need to be bolstered, according to a person familiar with the regulator’s thinking who asked not to be named because the matter is private. The industry’s decision to halt equities and bond trading shows the challenge of maintaining markets when a catastrophe threatens New York City, home to 168,700 securities industry workers. “One of the purposes of having electronic exchanges and basing them away from New York City is for the market to be more robust and stay open,” Charles Jones, a finance professor at Columbia Business School in New York, said in a phone interview. “This is what the back-up plans were designed for. But the markets didn’t open.”

Millions Stuck In Dark, Cold (WSJ)
Power was restored by late Thursday to about half of 10 million households and businesses that lost electricity during the storm, according to the Edison Electric Institute, a trade group that represents investor-owned utilities. But millions more remained cut off from power needed to operate furnaces, heaters, refrigerators and lights. “It’s freezing like an ice box,” said Lydia Crespo, who was using a gas stove to heat her home in Staten Island, N.Y., still without power. “No hot water, no light. All you smell is the gas, the oil, the mold.” The death toll attributed to Sandy reached at least 90, authorities said Thursday.

David Blaine Entertains New Yorkers After Hurricane Sandy (NYP)
When a backup generator at Old Homestead Steakhouse sputtered, the restaurant started serving hundreds of pounds of steaks, burgers, lobster tails and shrimp on the street outside for downtown denizens. David Blaine, the modern-day Harry Houdini who spent days recently being shocked in a steel suit, pitched in to provide spontaneous street entertainment. “David was rumbling by on his motorcycle, and he stopped to see why there was a line on 14th Street,” said a spy, adding 800 chowed down. Blaine then asked restaurant co-owner Greg Sherry if there was a deck of cards in the house. Blaine used the full deck and some spare silverware to perform magic tricks outside for an hour and a half. The magic man, an Old Homestead regular, was offered a doggie bag but said he’s on a special diet in preparation for his next stunt.

Nomura Faces Another Insider Trading Case (Dealbook)
On Friday, the Japanese bank said it was likely involved in a new insider trading case, months after the firm’s chief executive Kenichi Watanabe resigned following similar allegations. Nomura has been engulfed in an insider trading investigation since the bank acknowledged earlier this year that employees leaked information on at least three public offerings in 2010 to favored fund managers. The clients then profited from trading on the stocks ahead of the expected drop in the companies shares. The latest case relates to activities by the hedge fund Japan Advisory, which is subject to a fine recommended by Japanese authorities.

Romney Faces Sale With A Win (WSJ)
Mr. Romney’s assets, valued at between $190 million and $250 million, include investments in hedge funds, private-equity funds and partnerships at Bain Capital, which he ran for 15 years. These entities have ownership stakes in dozens of companies that could be affected by government action, such as radio firm Clear Channel Communications Inc. and a video-surveillance firm based in China. Many businessmen and wealthy individuals have entered government service and sold off holdings. But a Romney sale would be especially complicated. Investments in private-equity funds can be difficult to value and seldom change hands. Any sale would have to be handled carefully to avoid any appearance that the incoming president was getting favorable treatment from a buyer.

What Do Asia Markets Fear? Romney As President (CNBC)
At a time of heightened uncertainty, with the ongoing European debt crisis and the upcoming leadership transition in China, a new president in the world’s largest economy will cause additional nervousness among Asian investors, experts told CNBC. “Asian traders don’t like change in leadership. You would see weakness in the markets if Romney won, because people would question how well he would deal with the impending doom of the ‘fiscal cliff.’ Obama would be a safer bet, as investors would enjoy continuity at a time of a lot of uncertainty,” said Justin Harper, market strategist, at IG Markets…Besides, Romney’s stance on China is particularly worrying feels Harper. The presidential hopeful has said he will name China a “currency manipulator,” which could lead to more tensions with the mainland, including on the trade front. “You would expect trade between the two nations to suffer, this would have a knee-jerk reaction on trade in the region,” he added.

Fed Up With Fees (NYP)
The manager of a large public pension’s private-equity program said for the last 24 months he has not committed money to any new private-equity fund that doesn’t give all fees it charges its companies back to investors. He is doing this because he wants an alignment of interest where he and the private-equity firm only make money by reselling a business. PE firms, he believes, will stop charging their companies fees if there is little in it for them. So, KKR, for example — responding to pressure — has agreed to give all fees it charges its companies in its new fund back to investors, the pension manager said. KKR is not the only firm making this change. Apax Partners, Blackstone Group, Centerbridge Partners, Providence Equity and TPG Capital are among those making the same concessions, the pension manager said.

Local shelter mistakenly euthanizes family pet (WRCB)
After waiting 10 days to be reunited with his dog, a local college student learned the family’s pet had been euthanized by mistake. The Lab mix was being held at McKamey Animal Center, where administrators say a paperwork mix up led to the dog’s death. Matt Sadler adopted the three-year-old Lab mix when he was just a puppy. “That was my best friend,” Sadler says. “He was there for me through my parents’ divorce and a lot of really hard tough times in my life.” It was hard for Matt when Zion was quarantined last week, after jumping on a pizza delivery driver. “The lady didn’t want to press charges, it wasn’t anything serious, but the law has a 10-day quarantine period,” he says. Because Zion was a month past due on his yearly rabies vaccine, he was held for the full 10 days at McKamey Animal Center. Thursday, Matt eagerly returned to the facility to take Zion home. “She says, ‘I’m sorry, Matt, we accidentally euthanized your dog’,” Sadler says…McKamey has offered to cremate Zion, and allow Matt to adopt any dog he chooses.

(hidden for your protection)
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98 Responses to “Opening Bell: 11.02.12”

  1. pazzo83 says:

    I think amidst the widespread destruction, millions without power, thousands left homeless, whole neighborhoods gone, lawlessness, fire and police spread incredibly thin, and the general third-world-like conditions in large parts of greater NYC, the BEST idea would be to hold one of the world's largest marathons right through the middle of it.

    – not one single person with an ounce of sanity or compassion

    • The rest of the US says:

      It looked like the third world a week ago.

    • Bored Guest says:

      The millions that would be spent on hotels, food, merch, etc. would disappear; I haven't been following the exact details, but I would assume 85% of the course is already a "go", and the remaining parts need to be cleaned up anyway, so priortize them moderately; the police and support would be diverted for one day of however many (10? 20?) are involved in the relief and cleanup effort, which is a small number to prove resilient and continue to host what is a very positive event. By 5pm Sunday everything will be back to normal, maybe some extra foot traffic in Central Park.

      – Guy who's surprised at all the surprise around the race

      • pazzo83 says:

        The problem is all the people coming into hotels would displace people currently staying in them who have no home. Plus, the amount of resources needed for the race is huge. You are talking about 45,000+ runners going through all 5 boroughs. I would guess 85% is not a "go" with all the tree and water damage in Brooklyn and Queens. I don't see the big deal in pushing it back a week or two. It's obviously too late to do that now, though.

      • Idea Guy says:

        They should go ahead and have the race if the runners agree to carry backpacks with supplies — and pass them out along the way– to those affected by the storm. Things like small bottles of gasoline, toilet paper, batteries, loaves of bread. Maybe Doubleline could sponsor a battery donation/recharge point along the race route?

        • Doubleline Promo VP says:

          Furiously trying to find out what percentage of Jeff's personal electronic devices are rechargeable, will update soon.

      • guest says:

        The police required to put on the marathon is approximately 1500. It is a MAJOR suck on resources. Additionally, tons and tons of roads have to be closed off, as do several bridges, including one connecting Staten Island (hit the hardest) to Manhattan. Furthermore, the city is VERY fragile right now and really doesn't need the extra strain brought on by an additional 40,000 people. Finally, this is not going to be the uplifting event people who are pro-putting it on think. There are victims of the Hurricane who have lost their homes who would kill for free water or Gatorade right now and we're giving it out to runners in a race?

        Also, by Sunday evening "everything will be back to normal"? You are either not currently living in NYC, living in NYC but in a bubble, or smoking some serious crack. Things will not be "normal" for good long while.

        • Pookie says:

          "smoking some serious crack," whoa there buddy, no need to start getting on your moral high horse regarding people's lifestyle decisions.

        • KGB says:

          Sort of bizarre that this comment is getting thumbs down, but I guess that's cold heartless bastards for you.

        • Bored Guest says:

          "back to normail", i.e. race is over, and resources back to rebuilding & restoring the city.

          • PermaGuestII says:

            How about you go tell some 80 year old lady living on the 20th story of a blacked-out highrise w no running water that it's cool if she waits another 12 hours for help because it's important that nothing interfere with a bunch of runners?

          • Awards Guest says:

            Thats the most ridiculous comment I've read on DB in a long time. Congrats!

          • Lashontay says:

            Got the address ?

          • Bored Guest says:

            She's been there for a week? Sure, I'll tell her to hold on the 12 hours.

          • pazzo83 says:

            You can't be serious with this fucking reply.

            "Oh it's been a week so what's another 12 hours" doesn't really work when we are talking about basic necessities like WATER.

          • Bored Guest says:

            I don't seriously think that having the marathon will impact the 80 year old woman that PG2 invented to illustrate his point. So yeah, that's my serious reply to an unlikely scenario. If I'm feeling like less of a dick when I break the news to her maybe I'll bring along a gallon of water and a few slices of pizza for good measure.

        • Foghorn Leghorn says:

          Ummm, is that one bridge "connecting Staten Island to Manhattan" open for traffic again? That is the "Ferry Bridge", right?

        • '11 participant says:

          Free? Admission it like $300.

          Healthy profits were already made on these runners.

          Ask NYRR.

      • guest says:

        – guy who thinks you may be a tad out of touch with reality

      • PermaGuestII says:

        Every intact hotel with light & power in the city is booked solid. Every restaurant that is open is already full. The only people who are likely going to come to the city for the marathon are the runners themselves and I question how much merchandise they're going to buy. And by the way, the port has been closed since Monday and the warehouses and railroad yards on the Jersey side were all washed into the meadowlands so there's not that much merchandise to buy anyway.

        -Guy who thinks that when ConEd trucks are running out of gasoline and near riots are breaking out in Queens the idea of catering to a bunch of marathoners is ridiculous

    • Guest says:

      If you can run through Sudan, why not NYC?

      • No More Racism says:

        Many of the elite runners are coming from communities that are not as affluent as Staten Island or Breezy Point. The money they receive from winning the race goes back to help those who are sick and hungry. Whereas Breezy Point is a privately owned community that has a long history of excluding blacks and Jewish people. When Dinkins was mayor, they always complained about their taxes and how the City employees should be fired for being too lazy. Suddenly now everyone there is pro-government wondering why the government hasn't acted fast enough. Why aren't they demanding that their co-op solve the problem? Why aren't they blaming the electrical company for its defective transformers? Why aren't they blaming their architects for failing to stormproof their homes or themselves for choosing to live in Zone A. Obama should provide immediate aid but it should be contingent on the end of racism in Breezy Point (remember… ) and the end of this anti-government attitude.

        • No More Idiots says:

          Put the bong down Caleb.

        • guest says:

          Are you on fucking crack? Staten Island is not an "affluent" community and this is what it looks like right now, you fucking sociopath:….

          • No More says:

            The census figures show that Staten Island has a median income of $71,084 whereas new York state has a median of $55,603. Staten Island also has higher home values of $461,700 versus the state average of $303,900. They deserve all the help they can get but definitely had the funds to prepare for this tragedy better. See
            Also, two lives could have been saved if this yuppie had properly secured his 41 foot power cruiser.

          • guest says:

            The fact that you have time to research this at 1:30 on a weekday indicates you have too much time on your hands.

          • PermaGuestII says:

            Go back to California.

          • More says:

            Wall Street was trading stocks, bonds and futures mere days after Hurricane Sandy. It's okay for Wall Street to make millions in trading profits but not okay for the thousands of other people to work on marathon day selling t-shirts, bottled water, driving cabs, working in restaurants and hotels. Many of these don't get paid if they don't work. Should they be forced onto the bread line too? As far as diverting resources of the NYPD and the NYFD, FEMA, the US Army, US Navy and NY State National Guard are here. Many of the elite runners are from Kenya or Ethiopia. They tend to be very humble people who generously give back to their homeland.
            Where are the Wall Street tycoons? Why aren't they doing more to help? If Lloyd Blankfein challenged Wall Street to give $20 for every $50,000 of income earned, imagine how much that could do. Lastly, by holding the marathon, Bloomberg is challenging National Grid, ConEd and all the other energy companies to solve the power outage problem asap. That's the kind of executive kick in the pants those companies need.

          • PermaGuestII says:

            I think Governor Cuomo's threat to revoke their operating licenses if they don't get power back on in a timely fashion will have a greater impact on the utility executives than any nonsense about a footrace.

            National Grid? I don't think anyone's been worrying about the gas not working in Brooklyn.

          • No More says:

            Perma GuestII, I was not aware of that. Thanks for the info. I hope it helps getting the power on. National Grid is more than just gas.

          • RichardCripples says:

            I know everyone is going to attack this No More guy but he does have a point, these people were making $71K per year! It really was poor planning on their part to not outfit every house on Staten Island with a personal whole house generator. Or better yet, just build an impenetrable shield over the whole damn place!! I mean, c'mon, $71K per year, there is nothing you can't buy for that kind of money! The real question here is what were these people wasting that money on if not preparing for a hurricane/sandstorm/plague/locust invasion? I am sure these seventy-thousandiares squandered their riches on things like food, shelter, clothing etc. Fools.

          • More says:

            Staten Island is the most Republican of any of the bouroughs. They voted down money for FEMA, money for the sea gate to protect the harbor and money to fight climate change. Con Ed and National Grid generate billions of dollars in profits. They choose to shower their executives with comp and screw over their customers. It's their power plants and their transmission lines. They should have prepared for this by upgrading their equipment. The Con Ed plant on 14th street was in Zone A. Con Ed knew this but did nothing about it. Goldman Sachs spent billions on building a new HQ but they failed to storm proof it. The MTA has spent billions on Ground Zero, the Bowling Green station, the Staten Island Ferry terminal and the Fulton Street station renovation yet the system still failed.

          • RichardCripples says:

            You realize that when you write a paragraph all of the sentences are supposed to have a common theme, right?

            Try again, but this time focus on just one of the voices you hear, and definitely ignore any voice that mentions "the Illuminati" repeatedly.

          • No More says:

            You failure to respond specifically to my comments shows that you consent to them. Qui tacet consentire videtur, ubi loqui debuit ac potuit

            I don't hear voices and I certainly don't believe in the Illuminati. All of my comments were anti-racism and in favor of helping the poor (the runners who provide for their homeland) and the workers who work on marathon day. You have made your bed with Wall Street traders who make millions in profits and then seek to deprive people of thier right to work.

            If you can afford beachfront property, then you also can afford property in higher ground areas such as the Bronx or Harlem.

          • guest says:

            Just because Gawker's comment section is down doesn't mean you need to subject the rest of the Internet to your opinions.

          • PermaGuestII says:

            If you really favor helping the poor instead of making some bullshit "finance is evil" political point, and were familiar with New York, you'd realize that Rockaway, Coney Island, Brighton Beach, Red Hook and a bunch of the other waterfront neighborhoods that flooded are actually some of the poorest neighborhoods in the city, with tons of public housing projects. Bulk of the inhabitants are working class at best. They live out there because the rent is low as it takes over an hour to get to Midtown on the subway.

          • No More says:

            The marathon got cancelled. So, Congrats dealbreaker commentarians, you won!

          • Guest says:

            It's everyone else's fault!

          • Guest says:

            Tell me again how you properly secure a 41 foot ship in a hurricane?

            – USCG MD

        • guest says:

          So when it comes to racism, would you say you're more pro or con?

          -UBS Sociology MD

        • Stanten Island says:

          Barack Obama doesn't care about white(ish) people.

    • NakedShort says:

      Just plug a shitload of treadmills into a generator. Boom. Solved.

      -Guy in Florida thats been through a few hurricanes

  2. Guest says:

    Thank God for David Blaine. The only thing that can get my mind off the fact that my house is flooded, I have no electricity, and I've taken to the streets because I'm running out of food is a good card trick.

  3. Guest says:

    "Positions of more than 0.5 percent will be publicly released, naming both the company and the short-seller. Public disclosure is triggered any time that level is hit with each 0.1 percent increase or decrease after that."

    Wow… People, let's calm it down here….

    -District Magistrate Salem, MA circa 1692

  4. guest says:

    Was the vet a Palestinian?

  5. Guest says:

    Wow David, that levitation trick is phenomenal. Now levitate that fucking tree off my roof.

  6. Chartoholic says:

    Can't wait for Matt's article and chart on the power being restored and why that provides a counterpoint to certain US securities laws regarding insider trading.

  7. Guest says:

    Hedge funds buy bonds of highly indebted countries on the cheap in hopes of making a profit when prices rebound. In other news, Wisconsin gets cold in the winter.

  8. Guest says:

    Just turned on Bloomberg TV – in support of the victims of "Sandy", anchor S. Ruhle is wearing a tarp for the duration of the broadcast….

  9. Swiss Hedge says:

    Dear Press

    Sandy hit us too.


  10. Guest says:

    That plan to deliver Gasoline door-to-door doesn't look so stupid now, does it?

    – Dennis/Mac

  11. Todd says:

    There's a marathon on a bridge that my house is currently floating under.

  12. guest says:

    I'm sorry, ma'am, we accidentally euthanized your husband's career. You may adopt any first-year analyst you choose.

    – UBS HR

  13. Guest says:

    Chis Christie would postpone a marathon hurricane or no hurricane

  14. Mitt says:

    The power is most likely back on in your second or third home by now…


  15. West Coast says:

    Favorite opening bell comments ever.

    -1 this if you read this far

  16. Zion says:

    God’s judgment is on the Banker’s greed, haters against the True God, and wage exploiters in the form of nature because they would not relent from making God’s Children homeless and ignoring their rights and legal requests. Bank of America has been in default of our Countrywide predatory loan and have set a projected foreclosure sale date. Bank of America is not honoring our Qualified Written Request for copies of our lock-in agreement that shows a different loan, and our request for all documents and communication of 6 modification attempts, in which 5 were ignored and told once we don’t qualify. There was even an attempt through attorneys that promised return of our money if they couldn’t modify our loan, but they kept our money because we wouldn’t follow their advice to lie to the bank about our income.
    We have given this information on how we have been treated and terrorized acts against us for facing homelessness in a society of no jobs and increased gas prices against us as well, to; News companies, DOD, DOJ, Attorney’s, Governors, The White House, Obama, Bank of America Executives, Investors of Banks, etc. and have had no reply nor anyone to care about my AMERICAN RIGHTS against a predatory loan. No one seems to care and My Country has failed me. When this happens to True Children of God, then things like “Storm Sandy” occur to end the greed and exploitation of wages, against them. Wake up America, the next storm is coming because all you banks and governments care about is your money and dictatorship to support your own greedy, selfish tomorrow, which brings your next storm!