One thing everyone can agree on in the short term is dealing with the fiscal cliff. Chanos, who has asked Republicans to be more specific with their plans to raise revenues. “It’s all well and good to say ‘I want to lower rates or at least not raise them and I want to close loopholes.’ My answer is, which ones? Be specific, please. List them in order,” he said. Once you start going to things like mortgage interest deductions or charitable contributions, you begin to realize that tears the economic fabric in other ways. How about we start with carried interest? No one seems to want to put that on the table. What about corporations accruing but not paying their federal taxes by keeping their profits offshore?” [AR]
Jim Chanos Wants To See Some Real Ideas For Tackling The Fiscal Cliff And He Wants Them In 12-Point Font, Single-Spaced, Not Scribbled Out On A Crumpled Up Cocktail NapkinBy Bess Levin
Area Hedge Fund Manager Pretty Sure Wall Street Protesters Are Just Looking To Rub Up Against Each Other And Score DopeBy Bess Levin
What do top financial services employees think of the month-long protests headquartered in Zucotti Park, which took over Times Square over the weekend? So far the most vocal people have expressed support for the movement, like Jim Chanos, who said, “New York is so finance-centric that people here underappreciate the reaction of the rest of the country” and that OWS shouldn’t be underestimated; Larry Fink, who told reporters, “I believe we should not turn our backs on these protests…Maybe we will get some balance”; Jamie Dimon, who told those listening to the JPM conference on Thursday, “I do vaguely remember the First Amendment that it is legal to demonstrate and it is completely fine. You should listen and not just have a knee-jerk reaction”; and Vikram Pandit, who in addition to saying that “trust has been broken between financial institutions and the citizens of the US,” told protesters he’d love to chat over the phone. With the exception of John Paulson, however, who last week issued a statement telling protesters to 1) beat it and 2) thank their lucky stars that as the founder of a ‘most successful business‘, he chose to set up shop in New York, most financiers with less then charitable feelings have kept their feelings to themselves, fearing retribution from the anti-Wall Street group. Until now. Read more »
Jim Chanos, founder of New York- based hedge fund Kynikos Associates, said New Yorkers don’t appreciate the impact the government bank bailouts have had on other U.S. citizens. “New York is so finance-centric that people here underappreciate the reaction of the rest of the country,” Chanos said today in an interview in New York. “People are angry, they feel the game is rigged, that they didn’t get their fair shake.” Chanos, 53, who was born in Milwaukee, said the “disjointed” nature of the Occupy Wall Street demonstration, which started last month in New York’s financial district and spread to cities such as Washington and Seattle, shouldn’t be underestimated because protests in the sixties started in a similar way. [Bloomberg]
This year’s conference will not include David Tepper’s balls but the show must go on. Scheduled speakers, in order of appearance: Erez Kalir, Dinakar Singh, Jeff Aronson, Robert Howard, Phil Falcone, Jim Chanos, winner of the inaugural Ira Sohn investment contest, Steve Feinberg, Peter May, Steve Esiman, Jeff Gundlach, Marc Faber, Bill Ackman, Joel Greenblatt, Mark Hart III, David Einhorn, Eike Batista, Carl Icahn.
12:20 Speaker 1: Erez Kalir, founder and CEO of Sabretooth Capital, presenting: “Economic Death As A Special Situation”
12:21 The last time he spoke in front of this many people “was at my bar mitzvah”
12:22 You don’t have to make money the Warren Buffett way.
12:25 Holding MBIA stock is “favorably asymmetric” Read more »
“I think her general sense was correct,” he said this morning on Squawk Box. “You weren’t getting compensated for the risk as an investor and that’s an important call and that’s something people need to hear from time to time.” [CNBC]
Disgruntled Goldman Sachs Investor Jim Clark’s Bloomberg Therapy Session Offers Insight Into Why People Stick With GSAM When It Treats ‘Em So BadBy Bess Levin
For the March issue of Bloomberg Markets magazine, reporter Richard Teitelbaum explores the riddle wrapped within the squid that is Goldman Sachs Asset Management. Specifically, why investors stick with GSAM when evidence suggests they should take their money and run (GS’s funds have “badly trailed their peers over the three, five and 10 year periods ended December 31st” and yet assets under management have nearly tripled since 2000, rising an annual rate of 11.8 percent). To tackle this question, you could analyze data, talk to experts, see a palm reader or poll large groups of people familiar with the matter. Or you could save yourself a lot of time and remember that the simplest explanation is most likely the right one. And the answer to this conundrum is not just simple but brief. It can be summed up in three words, in fact, or two if you count the hyphenated one just once: Brand-name whores. Read more »
Chanos: “I have a problem with private capital asking for lower tax rates on certain forms of income that I believe are income, not returns on capital, than say teachers, soldiers, fireman and policeman”By Bess Levin
We’ve long been of the opinion that what the Real Housewives series could really use is a hedge fund edition. Alex Cohen, Biff’s old lady, Eddie’s girl, Mrs. PTJ would all make for sensational television and I know I’m not alone in saying I would truly do unspeakable things to have Lisa Falcone and her piano-playing pig in my living room every Thursday night. Andrea Tong? Stop, I can’t even. Still, it’s been a bit of a tough sell, what with many of their husbands wanting to avoid publicity, and so on and so forth. But! I think we may actually be able to get this thing off the ground, thanks to two worlds colliding over the weekend. As we told you a couple weeks back, DealBreaker favorite Jim Chanos and Real Housewives of New York cast member LuAnn De Lesseps were scheduled to attend a gala event for the Miracle House charity (Chanos was being honored for his contributions, and De Lesseps was hosting the shindig). We weren’t sure if the two would hit it off but our fears were apparently entirely misplaced, ’cause hit it off they did. I’m talking role-playing on the first date hit it off. Read more »
This Memorial Day in Bridgehampton, Kynikos founder Jim Chanos will be honored for his contributions to Miracle House, a charity “a charity that helps caregivers and patients who come to New York in search of medical treatment.” This is lovely and Jim is very generous. That’s not what we’re here to talk about. What we’re here to talk about is the host, LuAnn de Lesseps. The artist formerly known as “The Countess” is a cast member of the New York edition of Real Housewives. Except that LuAnn is no housewife, having divorced her husband, THE COUNT (pictured at left with his former lady), last year. (I’m not proud that I watch this show but I’m not embarrassed either.) LuAnn started off this season on the prowl and now she is getting desperate. Last week she went on a date with a guy named Courte who has who has highlights. She’s also looking for a place to bunk in NYC, having lost the UES townhouse in the settlement and being relegated to the Hamptons home. And, and I feel terrible for judging a reality show housewife by her cover, but I’m thinking she might be looking to land a rich guy. Finally, and most importantly, she’s trying to get her music career off the ground. Jim, we’re warning you because we care. Read more »