Florida

The 37-year-old Tortora, testifying for the third day in the case against SAC top money man Michael Steinberg, said his big year at now defunct hedge fund Diamondback was 2008, when his compensation hit $2.5 million. He only made $800,000 in 2009 and left the firm that was founded by former SAC portfolio managers early in 2010. Tortora, who is living with his parents in Florida while he awaits sentencing for his cooperation in the Steinberg trial, said he has only $100,000 left from his years of living high as a hedge-fund analyst. While the financial crash decimated portfolios of millions of Americans in 2008, that was Tortora’s big year, when insider trading tips about Dell, among others, paid off. Steinberg traded on that insider tip and knew it was illegal, prosecutors allege. Tortora said he lost $400,000 day trading and “several hundred thousands” in Las Vegas on blackjack and sports betting. He said he has also spent $400,000 on legal fees since his arrest on insider trading charges. While at Diamondback, he also fed insider tips to his stepfather, who did not know they were illegal. “In general, he’s done poorly,” Tortora told the jury. “He has lost a good amount of money.” [NYP]

At a gathering on Monday night at 740 Park Avenue in Manhattan for Diana Taylor, the girlfriend of New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, some of New York’s wealthiest considered a future without the billionaire in charge. There was considerable alarm about Bill de Blasio’s lead in the polls, along with his plan to raise taxes on New York’s upper echelon. “I fear for New York City if Mr. de Blasio gets elected,” said Muffie Potter Aston. “He just wants to tax everyone to smithereens. You have to be fair to everyone. You have programs that support all of the people of New York. But if you continue to tax what you see as the upper-income brackets, it’s still only going to be providing a small percentage of additional income.” [...] “I would love to support a fourth term for Mike Bloomberg. So if we can float that, you can say Muffie Potter Aston wants a fourth term for Michael Bloomberg,” she said. Her concerns about de Blasio were shared by her cohort. “I’ve never understood why New Yorkers vote against their own interests,” said Jacqueline Weld Drake. “New York is a city of financial entrepreneurs, of genius stock traders and bankers. It would be a smart idea to keep it that way. It’s not a city that’s going to benefit from high taxes because people who have substantial incomes have a choice. They have a choice of venues. New Jersey beckons. Florida beckons. All kinds of other states who do better at job creation. We are really biting the hand that feeds us. No question about it.” [WWD via Dealbook]

As those of you outside of New York City can attest, in other parts of the world, people do not need to limit their grocery store purchases to the number of bags they can carry (if they prefer not to order food online, sight unseen), wait for the B for what feels like an eternity while F train after F train after F train passes through the station, stake their claim to an apartment the second they walk through the door if they want any shot of getting it,* fantasize about having an in-unit washer/dryer, or feel like they’re taking crazy pills while watching the featured couple on any give episode of House Hunters declare they are looking for “At least 4 bedrooms, a minimum of 2,000 square feet, big backyard, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, double vanity in the master bath, finished basement, gotta have a finished basement” on a $185,000 dollar budget, a wish list that turns out to be totally doable.**

None of these are the reasons why Deutsche Bank is moving a whole bunch of bankers and traders to Jacksonville, Florida– those would be the immense cost savings, of course–, but they are some of the factors being cited as bright sides among the relocated. Read more »

  • 16 Aug 2013 at 4:14 PM

House of BODS Is Going Public

House of BODS is a dance studio in Central Florida. Since opening in 2007, it’s said to have gained thousands of clients who attend classes that incorporate “flirty, fun, and sexy moves that keep them wanting more.” Its mantra is “anything is possible if you believe baby” and what the brass at BODS believes, baby, is that this company has the potential to be huge. But right now, it’s small. HOBs has just one location, and last quarter its revenue was $5,517. How can BODs achieve a transformation akin to those of clients who started out tubby, out of shape, and unable to do a single high kick and in time “sweated themselves sexy”? Two words: DVD, infomercial. Read more »

  • 29 Jan 2013 at 12:41 PM

Palm Beach County is the Next Great Hedge Fund Center

It’s true, according to a county official, two hedge fund service providers based there and the New York Post.

An increasing number of financial firms, especially private equity and hedge funds, are fed up with New York’s sky-high city and state tax rates and are relocating to the business-friendly climate in Florida’s Palm Beach County.

And they’re being welcomed with open arms — officials in Palm Beach recently opened an entire office dedicated to luring finance hot shots down south.

But wait, you say: Didn’t another Rupert Murdoch newspaper recently tell me that all of the hot young hedge funds want to be in New York because lazy institutional investors aren’t interested in driving to Connecticut (or, presumably, flying to Florida) to meet with them? And wasn’t that story backed up with statistics and interviews with several actual hedge fund managers? Read more »

  • 13 Dec 2012 at 2:10 PM

Your Tampa Bay-Area Dream Home Is Within Reach

If you’re looking to buy in sunny Florida, there’s (almost) never been a better time than right now. Read more »

One question that people having been asking since the occupation of Zuccotti Park lasted longer than a weekend is, how long? How much longer, ballpark, will the Wall Street protesters stay camped out? Will the December chill drive them out? Will a January filled with sleet and snow that a certain someone will conveniently forget to remove do it? According to Stacey Hessler, not on her watch. The Florida resident, mother of four, and wife of a financial services employee named Curtis says she’s gotten comfortable.

“I’m not planning on going home,” an unapologetic Stacey Hessler, 38, told The Post yesterday. “I have no idea what the future holds, but I’m here indefinitely. Forever,” said Hessler, whose home in DeLand sits 911 miles from the tarp she’s been sleeping under.

And sorry, she’s not sorry. For those giving Stacey shit (her mom, husband, children, strangers), if you think she can just walk away, think again. Her place is here, in New York, with her new roommate, at the empathy table. Read more »