• 21 Nov 2012 at 9:30 AM

Opening Bell: 11.21.12

Germany Hints At More Financing (WSJ)
Germany on Wednesday signaled its willingness to provide additional financing for the euro zone’s bailout fund and accept lower interest on loans to Athens, in order to get the Greek rescue back on track and free the next tranche of about €44 billion ($56.40 billion) in loans for the euro zone’s weakest member.

Merkel Sees Chance For Greek Deal Monday (Reuters)
“I believe there are chances, one doesn’t know for sure, but there are chances to get a solution on Monday,” Merkel told the Bundestag lower house of parliament in a debate on the German budget. But the longing for one act, one miracle solution, one truth that means all our problems are gone tomorrow…this will not be fulfilled. What was neglected over years, over decades, cannot be taken care of overnight and therefore we will need to continue to move step by step.”

H-P Says It Was Duped (WSJ, earlier)
The technology giant said that an internal investigation had revealed “serious accounting improprieties” and “outright misrepresentations” in connection with U.K. software maker Autonomy, which H-P acquired for $11.1 billion in October 2011. “There appears to have been a willful sustained effort” to inflate Autonomy’s revenue and profitability, said Chief Executive Meg Whitman. “This was designed to be hidden.” Michael Lynch, Autonomy’s founder and former CEO, fired back hours later, denying improper accounting and accusing H-P of trying to hide its mismanagement. “We completely reject the allegations,” said Mr. Lynch, who left H-P earlier this year. “As soon as there is some flesh put on the bones we will show they are not true.”

Analysts Had Questioned Autonomy’s Accounting Years Ago (CNBC)
Paul Morland, technology research analyst at broking and advisory house Peel Hunt, told CNBC that he had noticed three red flags in Autonomy’s accounts in the years leading up to the HP acquisition: poor cash conversion, an inflated organic growth rate, and the categorizing of hardware sales as software.

London Bankers Become Landlords as Rents Hit Record (Bloomberg)
Vivek Jeswani became a landlord by accident when Deutsche Bank AG (DBK) transferred him to New York two weeks after he moved into a new home in central London. Now back in the U.K., Jeswani views the apartment in Baker Street, the fictional home of Sherlock Holmes, as one of his best assets and is about to buy another home to expand his rental business. “There are no other investments as attractive and you’ve got some security if you’ve got an asset you can use yourself,” the 36-year-old risk officer at China Construction Bank Corp.’s U.K. unit said. “There’s a good yield over 5 percent and being in central London, you’ve got demand domestically and internationally.”

Trading Charges Reach SAC (WSJ, earlier)
The hedge funds reaped $276 million in profits and losses avoided based on that information, criminal and civil authorities said—far dwarfing that of any previous insider-trading case. The bulk of the trading profits generated by Mr. Martoma was paid to Mr. Cohen, a person close to the hedge fund said.

Fed Still Trying To Push Down Rates (WSJ)
Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke suggested that the central bank will keep trying to push down long-term interest rates in 2013, as federal tax and spending policies become a more substantial headwind to the U.S. economy. “We will continue to do our best to add monetary-policy support to the recovery,” Mr. Bernanke said at the New York Economic Club, answering a question about how the Federal Reserve would respond to impending spending cuts or tax increases that might restrain economic growth.

‘Stiletto Surgery’ alters pinky toe for better fit (Fox)
A growing number of women are paying thousands of dollars to surgically alter their feet just to make wearing heels a more comfortable experience. Surgical procedures such as shortening toes, receiving foot injections and even completely cutting off pinky toes are on the rise. “Unless you’ve been there, and you can’t find shoes, and you’re in pain, don’t judge,” said Susan Deming, a patient who recently underwent a toe-shortening procedure…A few toes on her left foot were longer than the others, making that foot an entire size larger than her right foot. The solution: A surgical procedure cutting off about a centimeter of her second toe. Now, with a shorter toe, Deming said she can’t wait to go shoe shopping. “I’ve never felt this good about something I’ve done,” she added. “If it’s vain, it’s vain.” “It’s as if they’re walking on pillows when they wear their high heel shoes,” says Dr. Nathan Lucas, a podiatrist in Memphis, Tenn. with 15 years of experience performing such procedures. And for even narrower feet, Lucas said some women come into his office requesting removal of their pinky toe. “For me, that’s a bit extreme,” said Lucas. “I wouldn’t take anyone’s toes off unless it has to come off.”

Adoboli’s Fate Decided at Wine Bar as UBS Market Bets Unraveled (Bloomberg)
On a cool late summer evening last year in London’s financial district, with the euro-zone crisis worsening and Greece tottering on the edge of default, Kweku Adoboli says he asked the three traders who worked with him at UBS AG’s exchange-traded funds desk to join him for a drink. Adoboli said in a post on his Facebook page that he needed “a miracle” as his bets on the market imploded. That night at a wine bar across the street from their office, Adoboli asked John Hughes, the senior trader on the ETF desk, and two junior traders, what to do. The others decided he should take the blame for billions of dollars in losses and an elaborate web of secret trades in what he called an umbrella account that once held $40 million in hidden profits. “I knew I was going to lose my job anyway, I had already resigned myself to that, so fair enough,” the 32-year-old Adoboli testified last month about the meeting, which the other traders deny took place.

Jobless Claims in U.S. Decrease (Bloomberg)
Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits last week as damage to the labor market caused by superstorm Sandy began to subside. Jobless claims decreased by 41,000 to 410,000 in the week ended Nov. 17, the Labor Department reported today in Washington. The number of applications matched the median forecast of 48 economists surveyed by Bloomberg.

Soros Buying Gold as Record Prices Seen on Stimulus (Bloomberg)
The metal will rise every quarter next year and average $1,925 an ounce in the final three months, or 11 percent more than now, according to the median of 16 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Paulson & Co. has a $3.66 billion bet through the SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest gold-backed exchange- traded product, and Soros Fund Management LLC increased its holdings by 49 percent in the third quarter, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings show.

‘Cannibal Cop’ Gilberto Valle planned to to cook up ‘some girl meat’ on Thanksgiving (NYDN)
The “Cannibal Cop” had his own twist for a Thanksgiving dinner this year — cooking up “some girl meat,” prosecutors revealed Tuesday. Gilberto Valle, 28 — who allegedly kept a database of at least 100 women he plotted to rape, cook and eat — planned the freakish feast with one of his online conspirators earlier this year, prosecutors said.
“I’m planning on getting me some girl meat,” he wrote to his pal on Feb. 9. “Really tell me more,” responded the friend. “It’s this November, for Thanksgiving. It’s a long way off but I’m getting the plan in motion now,” Valle wrote.

46 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
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Comments (46)

  1. Posted by Kweku | November 21, 2012 at 10:05 AM

    "So, guys, I want you to tell it to me straight. Do you think there is a chance I could lose my job here?"

  2. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:09 AM
  3. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:09 AM

    Merkel speaks Italian?

  4. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    "I knew I was going to lose my job anyway, I had already resigned myself to that"

    -Everyone who’s ever accepted a job offer at UBS

  5. Posted by DingALing | November 21, 2012 at 10:17 AM

    "London Bankers Become Landlords"

    OWS is going to have a field day with this

  6. Posted by chavinuk | November 21, 2012 at 10:18 AM

    awwww yyyyyeeeeeaaaaaaah bbbooooyyyyyyyeeeee

  7. Posted by Boris the Bear | November 21, 2012 at 10:25 AM

    In Russia the turkeys stuff you.

  8. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    I am collecting any unneeded toes and will pay top dollar. Please send your toes to:

    Rex Ryan
    c/o NY Jets
    620 Park Ave
    Florham Park, NJ 07932

  9. Posted by Bejujular | November 21, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    Hey Mike,

    Everything's going to be alright, just follow these steps:

    1. Run off to Canada
    2. Reinvent yourself as a two bit Gordon Gekko
    3. Appear on reality TV shows where you are the "Simon Cowell" of bad business plans
    4. Sell underperforming mutual funds.

    Either that or go to Belize. Your call.

    -K. O'Leary

  10. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:29 AM

    Dr. Lucas,

    I will most likely be leaving my current position soon and was curious if you had any assistant positions available?

    – R. Ryan

  11. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 10:39 AM

    Well, at least UBS has learned something from this; you don't need all that many people to burn money.

  12. Posted by Walter Sobchak | November 21, 2012 at 10:48 AM

    You want a toe? I can get you a toe, believe me. There are ways, Rex. You don't wanna know about it, believe me.

  13. Posted by Desert Storm LA | November 21, 2012 at 10:50 AM

    You want a toe? I can get you a toe. Believe me.

  14. Posted by Gilberto V. | November 21, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Please consider me for the position as well. You say these are girl toes, right?

  15. Posted by Walter Sobchak | November 21, 2012 at 10:54 AM

    You want a Big Lebowksi reference? I can give you a Lebowski reference. There are ways. Believe me, you don't want to know

  16. Posted by SEC | November 21, 2012 at 10:56 AM

    If the orders were sells, they must get wells.

  17. Posted by SAC Trading Desk | November 21, 2012 at 11:10 AM

    You meant "If the ogres were seals, they must get wheels."

    Please stick to the code. Thanks.

  18. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 11:15 AM

    Does anyone else appreciate Stevie's hubris that when he fired Martoma he had to note that he was "a one trick pony with Elan"? If I was Martoma and I read that I would be all in selling Stevie up the river with as many insights to his insider trading over the years as I possibly could. Assuming I didn't get taken out by a former Shayetet 13 member before the trial.

  19. Posted by Feds | November 21, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    When Bartoma turns, PM 1 burns

  20. Posted by Hobbes | November 21, 2012 at 11:18 AM

    Kevin O'Leary is an embarassment to us Canadians.

  21. Posted by Hobbes | November 21, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    “I’m planning on getting me some girl meat”

    Go on…

    -Chris Christie

  22. Posted by Feds | November 21, 2012 at 11:21 AM

    see above.

    ( and lebanon 06, gaza flotilla. those guys are wildly overated )

  23. Posted by CanCon | November 21, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    He needs to take a number. Two words: Bryan Adams

  24. Posted by VonSloneker | November 21, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    It's gonna be Thanksgiving, I'm thinking Girl-duck-en…

    – Gilberto Valle's Cajun Conspirator

  25. Posted by Bob & Doug | November 21, 2012 at 11:29 AM

    Just don't mess with Geddy Lee.

  26. Posted by Ed Gein | November 21, 2012 at 11:49 AM

    Most women (read, girls) in Manhattan deserve to be served on a platter.

  27. Posted by Rust | November 21, 2012 at 11:52 AM

    The woman that I love is getting married

  28. Posted by A. Sandler | November 21, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Turkeyyyy Lurkeyyyyy!

  29. Posted by lucas | November 21, 2012 at 11:54 AM

    Justin Bieber?

  30. Posted by InfiniteGuest | November 21, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    You people sicken me. Thanksgiving is about side dishes.

  31. Posted by Swiss Hedge | November 21, 2012 at 11:56 AM

    Most Manhatten women serve themselves on a platter….. gotta love em … the slags.

  32. Posted by Little Jack Horner | November 21, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    And pie. Definitely pie.

  33. Posted by VonSloneker | November 21, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    I plan to be diabetic come Friday…after eating an entire tray of:

  34. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 12:11 PM

    I can't be the only person wondering if custom shoes wouldn't be cheaper.

    Can we get a DCF analysis with some graphs from Matt on this?

  35. Posted by Hunter S. Thompson | November 21, 2012 at 12:28 PM

    In a closed society where everybody's guilty, the only crime is getting caught. In a world of thieves, the only final sin is stupidity.

  36. Posted by E. Texas Gas Trader | November 21, 2012 at 12:31 PM

    Pi r²…? No. Pie are round; cornbread are squared.

  37. Posted by BroBruh | November 21, 2012 at 12:35 PM

    Always knew Laxbro and N'08 were Lakers fans.

  38. Posted by guest | November 21, 2012 at 12:46 PM
  39. Posted by Canadian UN Rep | November 21, 2012 at 12:49 PM

    the Canadian government has apologized for him on several occasions!

  40. Posted by Overdone | November 21, 2012 at 1:54 PM


  41. Posted by Wayoverdone | November 21, 2012 at 1:55 PM

    You are way over your head.

  42. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:01 PM

    Definitely not the only person.

  43. Posted by Guest | November 21, 2012 at 2:02 PM

    Thought the same exact thing this AM.

    -longtime reader

  44. Posted by Flo | November 21, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    Everything I do, I do it for you.

  45. Posted by Gen. Petraeus | November 21, 2012 at 2:28 PM

    Hey !

  46. Posted by Welcome back | November 21, 2012 at 2:29 PM

    That you John Mack ?