• 07 Nov 2013 at 2:07 PM

Call The (Twitter) Close (UPDATE)

UPDATE: And the winner is guest @ 3:43PM, with a just-under-the-wire call of $44.87. Guest, please get in touch to claim your prize.

Standard Price Is Right rules, closest without going over, guesses in by 3:45PM. Read more »

Update (2:45PM, 06/27/13): A little birdy has informed us that there were far fewer avian invaders on site that previously claimed; additionally, they were confined to one employee’s walled office, and did not necessitate an early close of the trading floor. Regardless, Cohen’s love and respect of all God’s winged creatures still stands.
Say what you want about Steve Cohen but underneath the supposedly icy exterior of the misunderstood hedge fund manager beats the heart of a man who, while he may not care for all humans, loves other types animals, furry and feathered alike. That would explain why, instead of simply bringing in team of hired guns to shoot down the flock of birds that made their way into SAC HQs yesterday while directing everyone to stay in their seats and carry on, business as usual, he reportedly shut the whole operation down down to deal with the visitors in a humane fashion. Read more »

“Frankly, my dear, you should give a damn,” Louis Bacon said last night, paraphrasing from what he called his holy book, “Gone With the Wind.” The Raleigh, North Carolina-born hedge-fund manager, who looks a bit like Rhett Butler (especially the hair), exhorted guests to protect nature as he accepted the National Audubon Society’s Audubon Medal…Five women costumed as North American birds circulated during cocktail hour. They wore bras and undies, a feather here and there, and body paint (they’d spent six hours standing during their transformation). Each ably identified herself (which most guests — including Jonathan Rosen, author of a book about birding — failed at). There was a red-breasted robin, a Blackburnian warbler, a loon, a blue jay and a calliope hummingbird. “Mrs. Bacon and I thought of it,” said Ann Colley, the executive director of the Moore Charitable Foundation, which has carried out much of Bacon’s conservation work. “We didn’t want it to be boring.” [Bloomberg]

As many of you know, to call Hank Paulson a fan of birds would not do justice to the special relationship between the former Treasury Secretary and his feathered friends. Birds get nine mentions in his memoir (verus Warren Buffett’s six), he was said tofreak out when [they’d] fly into the glass windows of 85 Broad,” they’ve become the third person in his marriage (Wendy Paulson, also a huge fan, was apparently “jealous” of a recent outing Hank took without her, preferring to have them all to himself), they were the ones he was referring to when he said 20 percent of the staff at Goldman added 80 percent of the value, and, despite having to neglect them in order to deal with the whole Bear Stearns situation (he said he was sorry and he meant it), birds have remained unflaggingly loyal, among HP’s closest confidants, the sources of his most joyful and precious moments in life and just really great buddies. That’s why it doesn’t hurt that people aren’t banging down his door to kick back and watch the game over some non-alcoholic beer and learn about the observable differences among types of manure.
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No, not talking about the possibility of blood clots or loud noises being the cause. Talking about something far more plausible. Read more »

On the whole, most people do not watch CNBC after leaving the office, as the nighttime programming leaves little opportunity to see a breast to pop out, Mark Haines awkwardly trying to do an Australian accent while co-hosting with Amanda Drury or a fight between anchors and/or guests. That’s very likely to change on tomorrow night’s episode of “Meeting of the Minds.” You see, gang, it’s pretty well-known at this point that Hank Paulson is a lover of birds. For years the former Treasury Secretary has spoken of his passion for feathers, and in his autobiography devoted a whopping 9 pages to the things, which was more than was afforded to Warren Buffett, Erin Burnett and David Einhorn, among others. Hank, it’s quite obvious, would kill a man in cold blood if it meant saving his special friends. He would also feel compelled to avenge the death of bird– wing for a wing and all that shit. And I don’t even want to think what he’d do if he were to, say, come face to face with a guy who massacred an entire flock of them. Which is why a press-release this morning sent shivers up my spine. Read more »

No friends of Ken Lewis

In its storied history, Bank of America has accidentally foreclosed on a few houses it wasn’t supposed to. There are a lot of deadbeats out there and really no good centralized system for keeping track of whose homes are supposed to padlocked and whose aren’t. Whatever, it’s bound to happen. Not really something we can hold against them. What we can shame those fuckers for, however, is, for instance, foreclosing on someone who actually wasn’t in default and then confiscating his/her beloved parrot. Except that wasn’t just a for instance, ladies, Bank of America really did that.

Angela Iannelli, 46 years old, alleged in a lawsuit Monday that the October incident—which separated her from her 11-year-old parrot for more than a week—caused so much “emotional distress” that she needed a prescription medication for anxiety.

A Bank of America spokesman said Wednesday a bank employee erroneously believed the house was vacant and sent the contractor there with instructions to install a new lock and otherwise “secure” the property. The bank spokesman said those instructions were inappropriate because Ms. Iannelli wasn’t in default and the house wasn’t vacant.

But maybe we’re being too hard on BofA? Maybe they took full credit for the mistake, apologized profusely and had Ken Lewis personally drive out to Ms. Iannelli’s house to bring her back her bird? Read more »

The University of Missouri journalism school held a talk at the Harvard Club last night, featuring bird watcher Hank Paulson. The invite specified that the event was off the record, which didn’t sit well with Missouri alum Charlie Gasparino. Chaz doesn’t do off the record, which is why he see your OTR and raises you a “stugatz,” which is something his mother, may she rest in peace, used to say. And you know what? Just for daring to even think that Gaspo would attend your talk without even the possibility of getting a story out of it, what he’s going to do, is he’s going to do, is he’s going to wait for your car to pull up, and get in your face, and ask you questions anyway, with a camera rolling. If you want to blow him off, fine, but just know it’s going to come back to ten-fold (CG’s stugatz where the sun don’t shine).