The surprise camaraderie enjoyed by the U.K. in European circles, vis-à-vis the European Community’s campaign to destroy London’s status as a global financial center, has evaporated as quickly as it appeared. As if to fortify the opinion of Euroskeptics across Great Britain that the U.K.’s European partners are fey, duplicitous and centralizing all at the same time, Germany et. al. have said, “We’re happy to sign an impotent letter complaining about something we can no longer do anything about, but you can’t expect us to stand in the way of impotent populist measures directed at people who don’t live in our countries.” Read more »
Back in December, a bunch of recruiters made the bold claim that following the government’s charges against former portfolio manager Mathew Martoma, SAC Capital employees were, if not giving them the time of day, at least waiting a few seconds longer before hanging up the phone. At another firm, the turn events probably would have been cause for concern that the staff would be abandoning ship in short order. Since we’re talking about SAC, though, we figured not only would The Big Guy & Co not be concerned about the prospect of mass resignations but would take the opportunity to remind people that this is SAC Capital and at SAC Capital, they don’t receive resignation letters, they only issue pink slips, lest anyone be getting any ideas. So you can imagine our shock and horror to find out this happened: Read more »
Supposedly. Read more »
Not just at UBS. Read more »
Will you be thanked for your hard, non-rogue-esque work over the year? Probably. Will you receive any actual money? Probably not. Read more »
How’s your PnL looking so far this year? Happy your long dollar position is starting to look good? Or are you annoying your b-school alumni affairs office asking them to post more jobs for experienced grads (Hey, Columbia, are you reading this? Get to work!).
Either way, if you have time to read this, I’ll bet you’re not doing as well as Adam Levinson. No, not that jerk from Maroon 5 — that’s Adam Levine.
Adam Levinson is doing WAY better than Adam Levine. For one, no one’s calling him a no-talent bastard to his face. For another, Fortress Investment Group just gave him $300 million in shares. But that’s not the first time he made more money than you or that weasel Adam Levine.
According to Jeffrey Cane of Portfolio.com (who wrote a piece linking to a lot of other pieces I didn’t read; As a former derivatives trader, I like to think of this as derivative journalism):
“Levinson, whose annual income Trader Monthly estimated a year ago was between $75 million and $100 million, joined Fortress in 2002 from Goldman Sachs. “
Then Cane asks the question we all ask ourselves when we read such things, if only to make ourselves feel better:
“The package shows that even amid a slowdown, firms are still paying out huge sums to star traders and dealmakers. Are they worth it?”
If you’re not Adam Levinson, the answer to that question is usually, “Hell no! Give that money to me!”. However, if you’re Adam Levinson, the answer is inevitably, “Hell yes! I should be paid more!”
Apparently, a Citigroup analyst disagrees with Fortress and Levinson and Cane provides a nifty quote. However, at the rate things are going, Levinson can buy out Citigroup, fire the analyst, and delete Adam Levine’s bank account so we don’t have to read about his dating exploits ever again.
Apropos of nothing, I always think of this site when i think of Adam Levine.
The Wall Street bonus pool will be even shallower this year, according to the most obvious report ever.
As merger activity slows and banks write down billions of dollars of assets, bonuses for investment bankers and stock and bond traders could decline by at least 10 percent in 2008, while top executive bonuses could fall by as much as 35 percent, according to the report dated May 2.
The credit crisis will mostly affect bonuses for workers directly involved in trading and selling assets like subprime mortgage bonds, the report said.
It’s kind of awesome that someone got paid to write that report.
Wall Street bonuses could slide in 2008: report [Reuters]
Those watching CNBC’s “The Call” circa 11:30 this morning know that Charlie Gasparino lost a bet to Mary Thompson over how big Lloyd Blankfein’s package would be this year, with Melissa Francis officiating. The terms of the wager stated that the loser had to buy dinner at Campagnola. Interestingly enough, No Sleeves claims that he didn’t lose anything, but was simply doing the chivalrous thing that anybody boy worth his Rego Park salt would do, and treating the ladies (his words: “It’s the gentlemanly thing to do, and I am a gentleman”). Bull shit. The fact that said dinner, which came to $412.40, was paid for with a Visa card bearing the name “Gasparino” (expiration date: 09/08) is irrefutable proof that Charlie Gasparino is a terrible judge of size. Anyway. As NS noted, we enjoy chronicling his every move, from “what deli meats [he] eats to where [he] works out,” so obviously we sent Intern Scott to pose as the pepper grinder and take copious notes, as well as the Visa number with which we bought a bunch of shit for ourselves (mostly Italian delicacies filled with nitrates so the theft would go undetected). His report:
- Charlie: Mixed green salad, Dover sole with ketchup (women registered shock and disgust over choice of condiment, and I would agree), steamed broccoli on the side. (Consumption of the salad seemed forced, as though he would’ve preferred another dish but sensed he was being watched)
- Melissa: pasta with some sort of cream sauce (recommended by maître d’ “Frankie”)
- Mary: house salad
- Melissa/Mary: Split a T-bone for 2, home fry potatoes, creamed spinach, steamed broccoli
- Sooprezat on the table, Charlie didn’t touch it (odd)
- White wine
- 1 Napoleon, split three ways
- Charlie gave shit to some Goldman guy
- Frankie mentioned that Charlie had been there the night before, and the night before that
- “A lot of pinky rings”
We also have some brief footage of the dinner, after the jump.
The worst fears of investment bankers regarding bonuses have not come to pass. Declining profits at many Wall Street banks, record breaking losses at some, and dire predictions from compensation experts gave rise to a fear that bonuses paid to bankers, traders and brokers would decline precipitously. That has not happened.
Wall Street bonuses grew in 2007 to a total of $39.34 billion, up from $36.19 billion in 2006. That is good news for many of our readers on Wall Street. But the news of that 8.7% increase will likely lend confidence to the cozy consensus that there is something seriously unsound with Wall Street’s compensation model and that a new paradigm needs adopting, perhaps with the very visible hand of the state pushing banks and brokerages into the new mould.
The sentiment that there is something wrong with the system that results in paying some on Wall Street more in a year than many Americans—including many journalists—will be paid in a lifetime has a long track record. Last year’s record bonus numbers, for instance, also summoned forth carping about allegedly “outsized” compensation. But in the best of times—when firms were registering record profits and shareholders reaped the benefits of huge dividends and rises in share prices—this view could be dismissed as the dividend of envy. In more troubled times, however, the calls for compensation reform can seduce even more balanced minds.
Before this goes any further, it’s important to see these calls for what they are—which is yet another attempt to substitute a rational plan backed by government coercion for a market process. Planning is conceit that will never die regardless of how often we hear about the triumph of free markets and the end of eras of big government. Many among us remain as dependent planning as a drunk is on booze. They can go a long way without the intoxicant but certain triggers are sure to see them back at the bar.
[More after the jump]