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  • 09 Oct 2014 at 2:33 PM

Take Cristina Kirchner’s Word For It

She may be running out of dollars, and the new civil code her party just rammed through may technically allow it to pay its debts in its increasingly worthless currency. But she promises you that Argentina would never do something so underhanded as that. Read more »

“I expect my second life at Janus Capital to be a simpler sequel to my life at Pimco,” Gross said in a conversation today with Janus’s Chief Executive Officer Dick Weil that was broadcast on the firm’s website. “I think we’re going to make for a good team, not just you and I but a lot of people coming together.” Gross, who had a bandaid under his right eye, said “it’s been a rough few weeks” since he decided to leave his former employer. [Bloomberg]

  • 09 Oct 2014 at 12:36 PM
  • Banks

President Obama Has A Question About The JPMorgan Cyberattack

Alas, there is no answer. Read more »

Atlantic City Union Calls Carl Icahn’s Bluff

At least, they hope the he’s bluffing when he says that unless union members agree to make their already-shitty jobs even shittier, he’s going to make those shitty jobs disappear, the way he made all of those shitty jobs up the boardwalk disappear earlier this year. Read more »

Jailed-for-life Ponzi villain Bernie Madoff is offering to put in a good word for five former underlings before they are sentenced for aiding his epic $17 billion scheme — and amazingly one of them wants the help. A series of emails Madoff sent lawyers for the five ex-Madoff staffers convicted in March were included in new Manhattan federal court filings Wednesday. In one of them, a Sept. 29 email, addressed, “Gentlemen,” Madoff says, “I am still available to help if you desire. I assure you that my info on each of your clients is of great value and discredits the testimony provided by Frank D,” referring to his former lieutenant Frank DiPascali, the government’s star witness and a convicted fraudster.” Larry Krantz, who represents former Madoff computer programmer George Perez, was the only lawyer to take him up on the dubious offer. [NYP]

Time was, the unofficial policy at (the hedge fund formerly known as) SAC Capital was that one could earn a pretty penny come bonus season if one made the firm a ton of money, and if that money happened to be made through material non-public information well…whatyougonnado? At SAC Capital 2.0 AKA Point72 Asset Management, however, insider trading is not only frowned upon, it’s both officially and unofficially a bad idea and one that could cost you big time on payday (though one would obviously be fired before that, unless payday is the day they get caught).

But just because the company handbook has been rewritten, or Steve Cohen has held a town hall where the words “If we catch you insider trading, I’ll stick my hand down your throat and rip out your spleen” have exited his mouth, or the hedge fund’s propriety trading software has been rewired so that a cartoon Cohen pops up on the screen and says “Remember, I can make it look like an accident” before any trades are placed, doesn’t mean that people can change their ways in a day. Old habits die hard, particularly at a place where those old habits could score you 8 figures a year.

Which is presumably why* someone at Point72 came up with this: Read more »

Opening Bell: 10.09.14

Barclays to Pay $20 Million, Assist Libor Plaintiffs (Bloomberg)
Barclays agreed to pay $20 million and cooperate with a group of Eurodollar-futures traders suing other banks, to settle litigation over manipulation of the benchmark London interbank offered rate. The accord, reached yesterday, resolves claims by people and firms that traded in Libor-based Eurodollar futures contracts and options on exchanges including the Chicago Mercantile Exchange from Jan. 1, 2005, to May 31, 2010. Lawyers for the traders disclosed the agreement today in a letter to U.S. District Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald in Manhattan, who must approve the settlement for it to take effect.

Herbalife’s New Compliance Chief Comfortable Risking Neck (Bloomberg)
Herbalife’s new compliance chief said her experience using the company’s shakes, as well as an informal look at its operations, made her willing to stick her neck out for a business that’s being probed by regulators. Pamela Jones Harbour, who spent seven years with the Federal Trade Commission, was introduced as Herbalife’s first senior vice president for global member compliance and privacy on Oct. 6. That experience with the same agency that’s now investigating allegations Herbalife runs a pyramid scheme boosted the shares 6 percent after her hiring was announced. Hedge fund manager Bill Ackman has spent two years trying to shut down Herbalife, saying it profits by recruiting distributors rather than selling products to consumers. Harbour said she was convinced otherwise by a visit to an Herbalife nutrition club, tours of an automated distribution center and testing lab as well as meetings with executives. “There have been times in my career where I’ve stuck my neck out, but I only will do that if I’m really confident of my own convictions and willing to live with the consequences,” she said in an interview. “This is one such instance.”

Businessmen are ‘serfs’ in Putin’s Russia, warns Sergei Pugachev (FT)
A former close associate of Vladimir Putin has said Russian businessmen were all now “serfs” who belonged to the president, with none of the country’s companies beyond his reach. Sergei Pugachev, who was once so close to Mr Putin that he was known as the “Kremlin’s banker”, made the comments in his first interview since the state seized his multibillion-dollar ship building empire in 2012. Speaking to the Financial Times, Mr Pugachev warned that there were no longer any “untouchables” in a Russian business landscape increasingly dominated by Mr Putin. The Russian economy, he argued, had been transformed into a feudal system where businessmen were only nominal owners of their assets.

Icahn promises ‘interesting’ Apple letter (CNBC)
Carl Icahn will be sending an open letter to Apple CEO Tim Cook on Thursday, the activist investor said on Twitter…Icahn also took to Twitter to say that it was just over a year since his firm announced its large position in Apple, and that the stock is up 50.6 percent since then. Icahn has previously pushed for Apple to engage in stock more buybacks, and trumpeted its pipeline of new products.

Man has spent $25,000 seeing ‘Rock of Ages’ 500 times (NYP)
Abe Calimag remembers his first “Rock of Ages.” It was July 1, 2009, and he bought a ticket because actress Amy Spanger was in it, and he loved her in “Kiss Me, Kate.” Turns out Spanger was off that night, but it didn’t matter: Calimag just couldn’t stop believin’ what he saw. And so he saw it again, and again — some 500 times in all, in several states, six countries and on several cruise ships. And he has the ticket stubs to prove it…Calimag has planned entire vacations around seeing “Rock of Ages.” The Fairfax, Va., business consultant says he spent 10 days in Australia, during which time he went to the zoo, toured the museums — and saw the show 12 times. Read more »

Write-Offs: 10.08.14

$$$ U.S. Preparing Charges Against Banks in Currency Rate-Rigging Cases [Bloomberg]

$$$ Citigroup, E*Trade Said to Be Breached by JPM Hackers [Bloomberg]

$$$ More Big Venture-Backed Companies Shun IPOs, For Now [WSJ]

$$$ Banks Set to Sign Deal Helping End ‘Too Big to Fail’ [WSJ]

$$$ Expensive engagement rings mean shorter marriages: study [NYDN] Read more »

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