Opening Bell: 04.22.13

Bill Gross Attacks UK and Euro Zone Austerity (FT)
Bill Gross, manager of the world’s largest bond fund for Pimco, has launched a stinging attack on efforts by Britain and much of the euro zone to cut debt rapidly with severe austerity measures, warning that such action risks stifling recovery. “The U.K. and almost all of Europe have erred in terms of believing that austerity, fiscal austerity in the short term, is the way to produce real growth. It is not,” Mr Gross told the Financial Times. “You’ve got to spend money.”

Argentina’s New Debt Offer Rejected by Holdout Creditors (WSJ)
Holdout creditors on Friday rejected Argentina’s proposal to pay them about 20 cents on every U.S. dollar of bonds they own, leaving a U.S. appeals court to decide how to enforce a ruling that may push Argentina into a new default. “Not only are the details of Argentina’s proposal unacceptable and unresponsive; Argentina fails even to provide this court with meaningful ‘assurances’ that it will actually comply with its own proposal,” said Theodore Olson, a lawyer for the holdouts, in a brief filed Friday. Argentina’s own math values the offer at $210 million, less than 15% of the $1.47 billion that holdouts were owed on their defaulted bonds as of March 1, according to the brief.

Hedge Fund Stars Suit Up At Yankee Stadium To Attract Investors (NYP)
Hedge-fund mogul Stevie Cohen will be pitching at Yankee Stadium tomorrow. No, the 56-year-old billionaire is not suiting up for the Bronx Bombers — but he will be hoping the magic of the House that Ruth Built will yield some investment cash. Cohen, whose SAC Capital faces a loss of $1.7 billion from investors who want out of his $15 billion hedge fund, is one of about 70 hedge fund managers who’ll be at the Stadium tomorrow making a pitch to prospective new investors at a day-long event sponsored by Goldman Sachs.

Singapore Will Replace Switzerland As Wealth Capital (CNBC)
Switzerland has $2.8 trillion in assets under management, with $2.1 trillion of that coming from offshore wealth. Switzerland accounts for 34 percent of the $8.15 trillion in total global wealth. Yet the report said Singapore could overtake Switzerland in offshore assets under management by 2020. It said Swiss offshore assets could fall below $2 trillion by 2016, while Singapore’s assets could more than quadruple by then.

Somali Banking Starts From Ground Up (WSJ)
Abdusalam Omer is a central bank governor without much to govern. The Central Bank of Somalia doesn’t hold reserves in the country’s currency, the shilling. There are no functioning commercial banks in the strife-torn country for it to regulate. The 75-strong staff that still turns up for work after two decades of civil war is a motley crew of money men and handymen. “I don’t know why the central bank employs painters,” says the 58-year-old who was named the country’s top banker in January.

Officer nudity was integral in massage parlor sting, Hallandale chief says (Sun Sentinel)
The police officer lay face down on the massage table, on duty, unarmed and naked. For 30 minutes Shu Yuan Sun worked the muscles of the officer’s back, his shoulders and legs, and then told him, “Turn over.” And that, said Hallandale Beach Police Sgt. Todd Crevier, is when the crime went down. While the arrests this month of three women on charges of prostitution and practicing health care without a license are described as part of an ongoing investigation into human trafficking, having undercover officers strip naked and engage in skin-to-skin contact to make arrests has revived an old debate. Just how far should police go to make a prostitution arrest, and just how vulnerable are they when buck-naked and alone in a place run by crime suspects? “This is not just an act of solicitation, but an organized crime effort,” Hallandale Beach Police Chief Dwayne Flournoy said. “It is not just a street-walker. It is a more sophisticated operation that requires a different mode of investigating.”

Eventbrite Funding Slows Its IPO Chase (WSJ)
Eventbrite Inc., an event ticketing company, has raised $60 million from two investors, making it the latest example of a startup to raise significant private late-stage funding that puts off an initial public offering. San Francisco-based Eventbrite had sparked expectations of an imminent IPO when it said earlier this month that it hired a chief financial officer, Mark Rubash, who previously worked at Yahoo Inc. and eBay Inc. Instead, it joins a growing number of companies that have found plentiful funding in the private markets rather than going public at an early stage. The company has raised the new cash from mutual-fund firm T. Rowe Price Group Inc. and Tiger Global Management LLC, an investment-management firm, said Kevin Hartz, co-founder and chief executive. That brings its total private fundraising to some $135 million since its inception in 2006. “This gives us flexibility in setting the timeline for a later IPO, on our schedule,” said Mr. Hartz.

Deutsche Bank Margin Call on Vik Sparks $2.5 Billion Dispute (Bloomberg)
Alexander Vik went to Deutsche Bank AG’s London office in October 2008 to meet account managers who congratulated the Norwegian entrepreneur on how well his Sebastian Holdings Inc. investment fund was doing. Within a month, as global markets tumbled into crisis, the same bankers demanded about $530 million against the fund’s currency bets and began to liquidate its positions. Vik, 58, will argue at a 12-week trial starting in London today that the bank’s actions resulted in losses and missed profits totaling about $2.5 billion. A judge will have to decide whether Sebastian’s calculation of lost trading gains is accurate, said John Day, a lawyer at London-based litigation firm DaySparkes.

Zimbabwe Prepares Law to Seize Company Stakes Without Paying (Bloomberg)
Zimbabwe’s government is preparing a law that would allow it to seize controlling stakes in companies without compensation, according to a draft of the legislation obtained by Bloomberg News. The law would be an amendment to a 2007 act that compels foreign and white-owned companies such as Rio Tinto Group, Sinosteel Corp. and Impala Platinum Holding Ltd. to sell or cede 51 percent of their shares to black nationals or state-approved agencies.

The Record (Steamboat Today)
10:05 p.m. Police received a call from a woman who said her juvenile granddaughter was at the ski area last week and ran into a person who was selling bags of what she thought were portobello mushrooms dipped in chocolate for $30. Police said the granddaughter further informed her grandmother that giraffes were chasing her down the hill after she ate the mushrooms.

62 comments (hidden to protect delicate sensibilities)
Show all comments ↓

Comments (62)

  1. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:10 AM

    There is ski in Florida?

  2. Posted by UBS etymology | April 22, 2013 at 10:18 AM

    In the south. All the jews.

  3. Posted by Fewdollarsmore | April 22, 2013 at 10:18 AM

    “I don’t know why the central bank employs painters?" For the same reason DB employs Shazar. Without him, it would be just two people – one figuring out which rich guy to pick on and the other which bank.

  4. Posted by PM 2 | April 22, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    The Big Guy tipped me and said his first pitch will be the ol' number 1.

  5. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:24 AM

    Any word on when the Hallandale Beach Police will be recruiting?

    -SEC Lawyer

  6. Posted by Alicia Fan | April 22, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    It’s weird isn't it? You look back on the mid to late 90s and it’s like pretty much every guy in America has Alicia Silverstone in their top five chicks they want a bj from. Now fast forward to the present and she’s just some chick in her mid 30’s growing out her bush for PETA. Maybe a sextape could turn things around. She’s a definitely a chick you can root for.

  7. Posted by lucas | April 22, 2013 at 10:27 AM

    “I don’t know why the deal breaker employs painters?" – to cover up the daily bullet damage.

  8. Posted by lucas | April 22, 2013 at 10:28 AM

    I meant "Somali central bank." Serves me right for cutting and pasting from the comments.

  9. Posted by Shaz Lookup | April 22, 2013 at 10:33 AM

    Hmm, Shazar sounds like a Chechen name. I'm gunna look into this.

  10. Posted by guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    There is gerund in English language?

  11. Posted by VonSloneker | April 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    No really dad, I bought this quarter bag of oregano for this boullabaisse recipie I've been perfecting. …well yes in hindsight $25 is quite a lot for oregano.

    – Guy who also told some dumb assed lies in his youth

  12. Posted by Really? | April 22, 2013 at 10:36 AM

    In my experience, mushrooms that are served covered in chocolate tend to be boomers roughly 100% of the time. And tripping around your grandmother is a very bold move.

  13. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:41 AM

    But at the same time, $30 for chocolate dipped portobello mushrooms in Steamboat sounds like a steal.

    – Chocolate Covered Quant

  14. Posted by HotKarl | April 22, 2013 at 10:42 AM

    "Turnover…."

    -DSK, 2012 Sofitel Hotel

  15. Posted by Deleveraging | April 22, 2013 at 10:43 AM

    Practicing health care without a license = Prostate Massage

  16. Posted by Jerry the g | April 22, 2013 at 10:45 AM

    Not to mention tripping while skiing is a level 50 pro-level move. Michael Kennedy wasn't even able to pull that one off, and he sold his soul.

  17. Posted by CC Sabathia | April 22, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Nobody better give Stevie any tips on what I'm throwing at him.

  18. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:48 AM

    Gerundo Rivera is a friend of mine.

  19. Posted by Fook me | April 22, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    Should have been a cop…

  20. Posted by Deleveraging | April 22, 2013 at 10:53 AM

    I don't know, I found Peanut Butter to be the only good cover for getting the cow shit taste off of the mushrooms.

  21. Posted by No Animal Expert | April 22, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    I've done my fair share of hallucinating and can sympathize with trying to grasp at reality when it only seems to ooze out of your hands… but giraffes? Come on.

    How is a giraffe going to pose a threat to you on skis? I'll give you moose. Those things are fucking bears with antlers. I just don't see how playing the giraffe card was her best option, though.

  22. Posted by guest | April 22, 2013 at 10:57 AM

    The guys got the workspace etiquette of an trade operations clerk.

    -UBS Esthetic Professionalism Quant

  23. Posted by Alt_EST | April 22, 2013 at 11:01 AM

    That video of her feeding her newborn was pretty good start.

    -Big Bird

  24. Posted by login | April 22, 2013 at 11:04 AM

    you "shazed" it

  25. Posted by Giraffes are Scary | April 22, 2013 at 11:05 AM

    You'd be surprised.

    -Bulge Bracket IR Quant Scared of Ms. Bove

  26. Posted by Deleveraging | April 22, 2013 at 11:05 AM

    Lets just say there will be a lot of outside pitches.

  27. Posted by Little Fritz | April 22, 2013 at 11:09 AM

    Moose chasing the Giraffes. Missed it in the story, lousy reporting.

  28. Posted by LIttle Fritz | April 22, 2013 at 11:10 AM

    Cops been working the case for the last two years. One of these days, there WILL be charges….

  29. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    *present participle.

    there.

    no concerns in any case.

  30. Posted by Compliance officer | April 22, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    Justtttttttttt a little bit outside…..

  31. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    how vulnerable are they when buck-naked and alone in a place run by crime suspects?

    Ok so you might be referring to:

    1. A prison
    2.A police cell
    3. A brothel.

    In number 3 I think most officers confronted by a small asian lady giving them head would feel more or less ok…compared with 1 and 2 above. A lot depends on whether the nakedness is involuntary.

  32. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:31 AM

    " Grandma I just bought these mushrooms covered in chocolate"
    "What"
    " Um, mushrooms. Covered in chocolate."
    "That sounds odd. Do you like mushrooms?"
    "Oh yes Grandma"
    "With chocolate on them?"
    "Well, it sounded different"
    " How much did they cost?"
    "Er…30 bucks"
    "You bought chocolate covered portobello mushrooms for $30?..Feeling anything yet?"
    " AAAAArgh..Giraffes!"

  33. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Giraffe > Moose > UBS

  34. Posted by Billy Gross | April 22, 2013 at 11:40 AM

    Austerity..blah…not good…blah might strengthen sterling and euro versus dollar…blah , less reason for more QE…yields harden a touch…my fund goes..down!!!

    Less austerity..dollar strength..bad for things…Fed takes action…more QE..yields soften…bond prices go….up!!!!

    Nice one Billy.

  35. Posted by PermaGuestII | April 22, 2013 at 11:43 AM

    It's Colorado. Grandmama probably went "up the country" in 1969 with a VW bus, macrame clothes and enough acid/mescaline/whatever to last until the Reagan administration.

  36. Posted by Newport Beach quant | April 22, 2013 at 11:43 AM

    Summer Roberts > the chick from Clueless

  37. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:43 AM

    You should probably lay off the portobello mushrooms dipped in chocolate.

  38. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 11:55 AM

    ain't nuthin better….

    -the mongerer, cfa

  39. Posted by Fewdollarsmore | April 22, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    Five interesting facts about Bill Gross's office
    1) One computer for each bond-rating
    2) Colored keyboards are for junior tranches only
    3) Blue binders full of women acquired from Bain Capital
    4) Easiest way in and out is under the desk
    5) Those piles of papers are just expense reports

  40. Posted by Quant me maybe... | April 22, 2013 at 12:17 PM

    Things on my personal don't ever do again list…
    1. Eat bunch of mushrooms
    2. Nothing happens in like 20 minutes, so each a bunch more.
    3. Go see Aliens for the first time.

  41. Posted by Darn Words | April 22, 2013 at 12:24 PM

    presumably you mean 'skiing'.

    'Skiing' is not a gerund.

    It is if it is preceded by a possesive pronoun..eg 'my skiing'

  42. Posted by Hicks | April 22, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    You probably should have a medal for that.

  43. Posted by Brett Ellis | April 22, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    So you're saying you have coke ?

    Cruise by.

  44. Posted by Barry | April 22, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    Too soon, other Barry?

  45. Posted by Other Barry | April 22, 2013 at 12:57 PM

    Yes, Barry, I believe it is.

  46. Posted by Hudson | April 22, 2013 at 1:05 PM

    i don't wanna rain on your parade pal, but we' re fucked!

  47. Posted by SEC Fully-Torqued | April 22, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    Now, I want a nice, clean game. The wife and kids are at aunt Jackie's, the shades are drawn, and my modem has been going strong for a few hours now, which is a miracle since my ISP thinks it's funny to cut my 'sessions' short. I don't want to have to torque-down mid session and show you guys who's boss.

  48. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 1:11 PM

    If the Somalis need any help managing the shilling, I happen to know just the folks – Shilling Capital, Inc., I've been a happy customer of them for years and they've never let me down, great customer service and results way beyond expectations.

  49. Posted by Allianz | April 22, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    Bill Gross: rebel* with a cause.

    *By which I mean mouthpiece of the German financial establishment.

  50. Posted by guest | April 22, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    I'm going to ruin you, man. I will straight WRECK you!

  51. Posted by E. Cartman | April 22, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    Chief, if you want me to nail this Keyshone scumbag, you gotta give me time. I need to make sure I'm ready to nail him right and good.

    – Sgt. Yolanda Yates

  52. Posted by When Joking Failed | April 22, 2013 at 1:22 PM

    Isn't that John Merriweather's new shop?

  53. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 1:27 PM

    Quite possibly the worst idea ever. Only way it could have been worse is if you saw 'The Fourth Kind'.

  54. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 1:37 PM

    At PWM shops, do you think they all have a good laugh every time an actual Nigerian prince calls to open an account?

  55. Posted by Guest | April 22, 2013 at 1:39 PM

    I imagine you were grounded for trying to put oregano into boulliabaisse…..

  56. Posted by UBS EMEA Quant | April 22, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    Huh? We have numerous clients that are members of the Nigerian royal family, in fact the whole office has been working overtime to respond to an RFP for their sovereign wealth fund that got sent to our MD's gmail.

  57. Posted by Ma Bell | April 22, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    6) He communicates in person or via e-mail only.

  58. Posted by Snake Plisken | April 22, 2013 at 2:03 PM

    "He had to put his dick in the gloryhole." Police Chief Flournoy later added

  59. Posted by Harry Doyle | April 22, 2013 at 3:04 PM

    Tried for the corner and missed. How can these guys lay off pitches that close?

  60. Posted by IR quant | April 22, 2013 at 3:05 PM

    I have to question the marketing theory behind sitting Steve Cohen in Yankee Stadium to raise money. Does he really think a building associated with aging stars on overly generous contracts earned based on performance that investigations have linked to the use of illegal performance enhancing tricks will help assuage investors' concerns?

  61. Posted by Quant me maybe... | April 22, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    In a word, yes.

  62. Posted by Conan the Destroyer | April 23, 2013 at 10:59 AM

    Will Bill Gross tie that necktie already or take the damn thing off?

    -Guy who sick of seeing Bill Gross with an untied necktie on in every picture.