The Latest

Not holding his breath.Argentina’s economy minister has bad news for those of us enjoying every minute of the country’s ridiculous default: It’ll probably be over next year, when “the instruments that the vulture funds have used for extortion,” a.k.a. the bludgeon Argentina gave them with which to hit it, a.k.a. the rights against future offers clause whose violation might or might not lead to Argentina’s disappearance from the map or something, expires. Read more »

Michael PlattThe co-founder of BlueCrest Capital Management is interested in would-be employees who can be found in no-limit Texas Hold’em games in the early hours of the morning. Read more »

Lloyd Blankfein (Probably) Has Another $700M To Spend

Enjoying himself.Like every other Wall Street bank, Goldman Sachs squirreled a couple hundred extra million dollars in the third quarter, to pay fines and settlements and the like. Unlike its “peers,” however, the House of Lloyd is feeling pretty confident about matters legal and regulatory. Read more »

  • 05 Nov 2014 at 1:17 PM

Mathew Martoma Gets Extra Time On The Outside

mathew-martoma1Former SAC Capital Advisors LP portfolio manager Mathew Martoma won a delay of his Nov. 10 deadline to report to prison to begin a nine-year sentence, while an appeals panel considers whether he may remain free during his challenge to his insider-trading conviction. Martoma, 40, was convicted in February of making $275 million for SAC by using illegal tips to trade in Elan Corp. and Wyeth LLC in what prosecutors called the biggest insider-trading case against an individual. The U.S. Court of Appeals in New York today postponed Martoma’s surrender date until it considers his emergency motion for bail pending appeal. The court has yet to schedule an argument. [BusinessWeek]

Opening Bell: 11.05.14

joekernenWill the LeBron James Stimulus Be Good for Cleveland? (NYT)
What FitzGerald and some other Cleveland boosters envision, though, is a LeBron stimulus that enriches the city as a whole. Start, for example, with the restaurants along East Fourth Street, near the arena, whose business dropped significantly after James bolted for Miami. Scalpers are happy, too, and owners of nearby stores that sell T-shirts and jewelry also expect sales to pick up. To get that $500 million estimate, LeRoy Brooks, an emeritus professor of finance at John Carroll University, just outside Cleveland, assumed that all these people making more money will spend it in Cleveland, multiplying the James effect. Brooks told me he now thinks James will add between $163 million and $426 million to the regional economy. He said that he made the first estimate in haste, “on the day after my first grandson was born.” FitzGerald’s staff estimated a more modest bounce. The LeBron stimulus, they concluded, could reach $285 million, including the creation of about 550 new jobs.

Baltimore Banker Reveals His Double Life As A CIA Agent (CBS)
The secret and closed world of the CIA includes espionage, covert operatives, international surveillance—and Baltimore businessman Ed Hale. “I was an agent for the CIA,” Hale said. In a WJZ exclusive, Hale reveals his covert role inside the CIA. “I was the perfect cover because I was all over the world with my vessels and trucking here in America, so I was the perfect person to take somebody and send them out to Afghanistan, Uzbekistan,” Hale said. Hale probably looks familiar. He was the face of First Mariner Bank as chairman and CEO. He appeared in their commercials for years and is credited with developing the Canton Waterfront downtown. He owns the Baltimore Blast.

Republicans Secure Senate Control (Bloomberg)
Republicans roared back in the midterm elections on Tuesday, capturing control of the Senate from Democrats, holding on in crucial governor races and keeping their majority in the U.S. House. In the biggest prize of the night—control of the Senate—Republicans were pushed over the edge with Joni Ernst’s victory in Iowa, giving her party their first majority in nearly a decade after picking up six seats Tuesday night…At parties around the country, Republicans were already celebrating. Senator Jerry Moran hugged lobbyists and donors at the National Republican Senatorial Committee party in Washington. In Kansas, staffers for incumbent Senator Pat Roberts broke out their beers before final results were in. And in Louisiana, supporters for Republican Senate candidate Bill Cassidy took a break from watching election returns to offer a quick prayer.

Defiant US Rep. Grimm wins 3rd term amid tax trial (HC)
Republican U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm won a third term in Congress on Tuesday despite a rocky year that included a federal indictment on tax evasion charges and being caught on camera threatening to throw a TV reporter off a balcony. Grimm defeated Democratic challenger Domenic Recchia in the hotly contested fight for New York’s 11th Congressional District, which covers Staten Island and a part of Brooklyn. “The bottom line, you had my back when I needed you most, and I’ll never forget it,” Grimm told supporters in his victory speech…Grimm has pleaded not guilty to hiding more than $1 million in sales and wages while running a small Manhattan restaurant. His trial is set for February…In January, Grimm was seen threatening to throw a TV reporter off a balcony after the journalist asked Grimm about an FBI probe into his campaign finances. During their Oct. 28 debate, Grimm said he apologized for the incident but described himself as “tenacious.”

A Recent Surge of Leveraged Loans Rattles Regulators (Dealbook)
As regulators hunt for the next financial bubble, they are homing in on an obscure corner of Wall Street: the debt market where Tom Shannon’s company, a chain of flashy bowling alleys, recently borrowed nearly half a billion dollars. Mr. Shannon’s company, Bowlmor AMF, is one of hundreds with unlovely balance sheets that have tapped this market for more than $2 trillion since the start of last year. “It has all worked out very well for us,” Mr. Shannon said, sitting in the office of one of his bowling alleys, near Times Square. “The payments are very reasonable.” In raising money for Mr. Shannon, Wall Street would appear to be doing its job of matching companies that need capital with investors who can provide it. After banks like JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America make loans to the companies, they turn around and sell the debt to hedge funds, pensions and even mom-and-pop mutual funds. These leveraged loans, as the debt is known on Wall Street, funnel money to companies that might otherwise struggle to finance their ambitions. Bank regulators, however, are worried. In recent months, the Federal Reserve and the Officer of the Comptroller of the Currency have intervened to tamp down the market. Leveraged loans are made to companies with low credit ratings that could suffer high losses in a downturn. As a result, the regulators have tried to stop the banks they regulate from arranging certain types of leveraged loan deals.

Irish Agog That Joe Kernen, CNBC Host, Missed Their Exit From U.K. (NYT)
Becky Quick: What has the weaker euro meant, in terms of tourism? Martin Shanahan: So, I think Ireland’s a very globalized economy, so we look to what is happening here as much as we do to what is happening in Europe and we look to what is happening in … Joe Kernen: You have pounds anyway, don’t you still? Shanahan: We have euros. Kernen: You have euros in Ireland? Shanahan: We have euros, yes, which has aided … Kernen: Why do you have euros in Ireland? Shanahan: Why wouldn’t we have euros in Ireland? Quick: It is part of the E.U. Kernen: Huh? Quick: Part of the E.U. Kernen: I’d use the pound. Shanahan: No, we’ve had the euro for some time and we’re very happy with it. Kernen: What about Scotland? I was using Scottish, uh. … Shanahan: Scottish pounds, yeah. Kernen: Scottish pounds. Shanahan: They use sterling. Kernen: They use sterling? Shanahan: They use sterling. But we use euro. Kernen: What? Why would you do that? Shanahan: Why wouldn’t we do that? Kernen: Why didn’t Scotland? No wonder they want to break away. Shanahan: They’re part of the U.K., we’re not. Kernen: Aren’t you right next to, uh. … Shanahan: We’re very close but entirely separate, as you know well. Kernen: It is sort of the same — the same island, isn’t it? Shanahan: And in the North of Ireland they have sterling, but —— Kernen: They do … Shanahan: We use euro, yes. Kernen: It’s just too confusing. … Northern Ireland’s the pound? Shanahan: Northern Ireland’s the pound, yes. Kernen: Oh my God, you guys got to get it together over there. Read more »

Write-Offs: 11.04.14

$$$ Judge Declines to Block Ackman From Voting in Board Fight at Allergan [Dealbook]

$$$ Fed’s Bullard Upbeat on Economy, Sees No Need for New Stimulus [WSJ]

$$$ Icahn’s Publicly Traded Arm Is Stung by Energy Investments [Dealbook]

$$$ Pimco Total Return Fund posts a record $27.5 billion in outflows in October [Reuters]

$$$ Police: Suspect tried to eat DWI test results [UPI] Read more »

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  • 04 Nov 2014 at 4:52 PM
  • Banks

Jury: Former UBS Exec Neither A Snitch Nor A Felon

Who says being Swiss is illegal?The former UBS wealth-management head sure is glad he didn’t do what lawyers not involved in his helping people evade taxes case suggested, instead choosing to follow Jed Rakoff’s advice and see what a jury said about it. They said, “you’re free to go,” and with gusto. Read more »

  • 04 Nov 2014 at 3:53 PM
  • Banks

An Election Day Message From Goldman Sachs

U.S.A.! U.S.A.!Pay no mind to the silly Europeans or global oil prices. In fact, pay no mind to anything that can be connoted by the word “global.” All that matters is happening right here in the greatest country in the history of the world. Although, it must be said, those matters are not necessarily great themselves. Read more »