bankruptcy

Been itching to get back into the Food Eating Challenge game but unsuccessful in finding one that combines your love of competition and hyperglycemia? Today’s your lucky day. Crumbs Cupcakes is back and not only will it be offering its cupcake the size of 9 Costco-sized sheet cakes, but even more ticking time bombs of sugar just begging to consumed under time constraints by your investment banking analyst or hedge fund intern of choice. Read more »

Philip Falcone’s LightSquared Inc. will probably be able to borrow $1 billion to finance its exit from bankruptcy as a standalone company, Credit Suisse Securities LLC said in a letter made public Friday. The Credit Suisse Group AG (CSGN) unit said it was confident it could arrange the proposed bankruptcy-exit loan as long as LightSquared, a wireless broadband provider, met conditions including obtaining the “cooperation of all parties-at-interest” in the reorganization and “all required regulatory approvals.” Philip Falcone’s LightSquared Inc. will probably be able to borrow $1 billion to finance its exit from bankruptcy as a standalone company, Credit Suisse Securities LLC said. [Bloomberg]


[via @joecheckler]

Bloomberg has a fantastic article today about how Lehman’s decaying corpse is suing a bunch of former clients, many of them wee and sympathetic nonprofits, who hosed Lehman when they terminated swaps in September 2008. Some of these lawsuits turn on disputes over when those clients, or their consultants, should have valued the swaps for termination purposes, and I was looking forward to reading Bloomberg’s account of which of those customers used the SWPM <go> function on their terminals and on what dates, but for some reason that wasn’t mentioned.

The basic story is that clients had trades with Lehman that were in-the-money to Lehman, and when Lehman went bankrupt the clients terminated the trades and wired Lehman termination payments that Lehman now rather belatedly finds inadequate. You could understand why the clients would want to get out of these trades: for one thing, the trades had moved against the clients (thus being in-the-money to Lehman) and seemed likely to move further against them1; for another, if the trades did move back in the clients’ favor, what were the odds that a freshly bankrupted Lehman would pay the clients what they were owed?

Is Lehman right that the clients underpaid? Oh, I mean, of course. I don’t have the details of the trades but you can reason this out from first principles. Here:

  • It’s September 15, 2008, and Lehman has just filed for bankruptcy.
  • You owe Lehman some money.
  • How much you owe them is a somewhat subjective matter that depends on what termination date you pick, what model you use, whom you ask for a quote, etc.
  • You know, with some certainty, that everyone at Lehman who knows anything about your trade, and also everyone who doesn’t, has bigger things to worry about, like stealing office supplies on their way out the door.
  • You can basically write them a check and enclose a note saying “here’s what we think we owe you,” and see if they write back.
  • How big is the check?

Read more »

  • 02 May 2013 at 12:09 PM

Lehman’s Bankruptcy Worked Out Well For Intel, Anyway

One possible reaction to Apple’s gigantic tax-optimized share repurchase program is to think that spending a lot of time fiddling with how to optimize your share repurchase program might mean you’re out of better ideas. You can ponder whether this Intel share repurchase trade described in a Lehman Brothers bankruptcy lawsuit filed yesterday supplies any evidence on that question. Intel decided to buy back $1bn of its stock in August and September of 2008, and rather than just buy it in the market it entered into a pretty fiddly forward contract with Lehman like so:1

  • Intel gives Lehman $1bn on August 29.
  • Lehman hands the $1bn back to Intel for safekeeping – it’s Lehman’s money, but Intel keeps it as collateral.
  • On September 29, Lehman gives Intel some shares, based on the average price of Intel stock from August 29 to September 26.2
  • The dollar amount of shares Intel buys is $1bn, if the average price is $21 or below, or $250mm, if the average price is $25 or above, or some amount linearly in between if the average price is between $21 and $25:

  • If the dollar amount Intel buys is less than $1 billion, Lehman gives back the extra money.
  • So in other words as the stock price goes up Intel buys fewer shares, and vice versa, which is kind of wrong-way for them3 but right-way for Lehman.
  • In exchange for that risk Lehman agrees to give them a discount of 10.6 cents per share.4
  • The number of shares Intel buys is equal to the dollar amount divided by the average price minus 10.6 cents:

Read more »

Creditors of the former investment bank in the U.S. and Europe will get everything back. Creditors in Australia are not so lucky. Read more »

  • 30 Aug 2012 at 4:12 PM

Bonus Watch ’13: LightSquared

Harbinger Capital-backed LightSquared is a wireless venture that seeks to create “convenient connectivity for all.” Unfortunately, as the Wilbur Falcone fans among us know, it’s looking like it’ll be a dark day in hell before that happens, on account of bunch of forces working together to shut this thing down at every turn, including but not limited to the yachting community that claims GSP interference caused by LS will result in boats getting lost at sea; the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration, which has said LightSquared “may degrade precision services that track hurricanes, guide farmers and help build flood defenses”; and the FAA, which recently put out a study estimating LS could “cost 794 lives in aviation accidents over 10 years with disruptions to satellite-aided navigation.” Also not helping is the fact that LightSquared filed for bankruptcy in May, the company is blowing through cash faster than Wilbur’s Studio 54 days, and senior executives won’t stop quitting. While some people might take stock of the situation and decide, at this point, to throw in the towel, Wilbur Falcone’s benefactor is not some people. He’s making this thing work if it’s the last thing he does. So, what now? Obviously a couple of miracle workers are going to be needed and the thing about miracle workers is that they don’t come cheap. Gotta spend money to make money. Read more »