Bess Levin

Posts by Bess Levin

To that end, Hans in accounting is also getting a little too pushy with the “Was this prostitute really necessary? Is this threesome going to help Q4 revenue?” line of questioning. Read more »

Investors are bidding up prices of rare single-malt Scotches from distillers such as Macallan, Bowmore, and Dalmore, and Japan’s Karuizawa and Yamazaki. In January, Sotheby’s sold a 6-liter Lalique decanter of Macallan “M” single malt—one of only four made—for a record HK$4.9 million. “I’m not really an advocate of buying whisky and flipping it,” says Heather Greene, director of whisky education at the Flatiron Room in Manhattan, a bar for spirit lovers that offers tasting classes to aspiring connoisseurs. “But I’m getting questions from people asking if they should buy a couple of cases and sell them for double.” According to the Investment Grade Scotch index, published by consulting firm Whisky Highland in Tain, Scotland, prices for the top 100 single malts rose an average 440 percent from the start of 2008 through the end of July this year. That compares with a 2 percent drop in the Liv-ex 100 Benchmark Fine Wine Index and a 31 percent gain in the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index. [BusinessWeek]

Would he go so far as to describe his fellow hedge fund manager’s business tactics as hostage situation-esque? Yes, yes he would. Read more »

  • 27 Aug 2014 at 4:54 PM

Horror In The Hamptons: Rosé Shortage Edition

It could come to rationing. Read more »

A federal judge on Wednesday ordered PricewaterhouseCoopers to face a $1 billion lawsuit claiming that its bad accounting advice was a substantial cause of the October 2011 bankruptcy of MF Global Holdings Ltd, a brokerage run by former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine. U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero in Manhattan said PwC’s advice on “repurchase-to-maturity” transactions through which Corzine bought $6.3 billion of European sovereign debt affected how MF Global implemented its strategy and in turn contributed to its alleged losses. “This line of causation gives rise to a plausible claim that PwC proximately caused harm to MF Global,” Marrero wrote. MF Global’s bankruptcy plan administrator sued PwC on March 28, accusing it of professional malpractice for having provided “flatly erroneous” accounting advice to the company. Corzine is not a defendant. [Reuters]

Allegations of securities fraud are apparently no reason to slip out of one’s tank top, according to Michael Dupre Lucarelli, seen at left leaving federal court yesterday. Read more »

Like all amazing movies, miniseries, other works of art, the clip of Richard Handler accepting and taking part in the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is a slow burn to an amazing finish. Oh, to be sure, it starts out leaps and bounds ahead of any other videos of its kind: that is, in Handler’s penthouse bathroom, in front of his jacuzzi. It’s just that at every turn, it gets exponentially better, in ways you can’t imagine, ’til you’re at the end and saying to yourself, “This is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen.” Obviously, this must be watched in full, many times over the course of the day and possibly on loop and in place of whatever your firm is showing in TVs throughout the building. But, if we might, here are our favorite moments:

:01: We’re in Richard Handler’s bathroom. Why is that? Most of the head honchos taking part in this challenge (Marissa Mayer, senior execs at JP Morgan, etc) take the plunge on the street in front of their company or in someone’s backyard. No matter, here we are, in Richard Handler’s bathroom.

:05: Handler is narrating this video in his boxers and an old tee-shirt.

:12: He lays out the rules, we’re still in his bathroom.

:56: He nominates Carl Icahn to take the challenge, and Icahn’s wife to dump the ice (Icahn later takes to Twitter to say he’s too god damn busy.)

1:15: He starts ripping open plastic bags of ice and dumping them into the tub. It takes a while, because, again, he’s doing the challenge 1) in a jacuzzi and 2) in a jacuzzi that looks like it can seat 7. “It’s a lotta ice,” he tells the camera.

2:02: Even though he just dumped 8 or 9 bags of ice into the tub, he dumps a hotel-style wicker ice bucket into the bath, just for good measure. Read more »

Kleiner Perkins said it would invest up to $20 million in social messaging app Snapchat, valuing the company at nearly $10 billion, Dow Jones reported Tuesday, citing sources. According to the report, Snapchat said it now has 100 million monthly active users, nearly half that of Twitter. Snapchat, a smartphone app that allows users to share self-destructing images, has become popular among teenagers in the U.S. and its currently one of Apple iTunes’ top 10 free apps. [CNBC]