In this case, greatness being Lloyd Blankfein’s glistening, stark-naked body. Read more »
Bloomberg: Not One Bank CEO Can Fill Jamie Dimon’s Shoes, Especially Not That Guy From Australia Who Doesn’t Own An IronBy Bess Levin
Earlier today, Bloomberg ran a lengthy piece about the latest crisis on Wall Street: a lack of Jamie Dimon. Specifically, a lack of Jamie Dimon telling meddlesome regulators, anti-industry populists, know-nothing Congressmen, and hypocrite bastard newspapers where they can go and what they can suck. True, it’s not as though he’s gone anywhere, and he’s still reminding people “it’s a free fucking country” but “juggling multiple investigations and a $5.8 billion trading loss on wrong-way bets on credit derivatives” has left his hands a little tied and, some believe, cost him his once untouchable “stature” in the industry.
And while one should never simply offer problems without solutions, Bloomberg isn’t gonna sugarcoat this one: when it comes to “any kind of credible statesmen” to step in for JD, Wall Street is shit out of luck and not just because no one besides Lloyd came close in sales of their respective Bankers At Work And Play pin-up calendars. Among current CEO’s, Lloyd Blankfein, Brian Moynihan and Vikram Pandit are deemed too busy “fixing their own firms or repairing their reputations,” while Wells Fargo chief John Stumpf, though respected among his peers, is ruled out due to geography (“Part of Jamie’s fitting into that role was his natural brashness as a Wall Streeter and New Yorker, and that is not John”).
Meredith Whitney Not Worried About Jamie Dimon’s Ability To Handle House Financial Services Committee, Unlike Some Chief Executives She KnowsBy Bess Levin
As you may have heard, later today Jamie Dimon will once again testify on Capitol re: a certain whale’s multi-billion dollar losses. Unlike last week’s hearing, conducted by the relatively reasonable Senate Banking Committee, this time Dimon will face questions and screeching from the relatively bat-shit House Financial Services Committee, a group of people we hope will not hold back. Yet despite the HFSC’s history of making witnesses look good, not matter how egregious their offense, by conducting inquiries in a manner that would suggest recreational bath salts abuse by the Congressmen and women, Bloomberg’s Tom Keene was still worried earlier this morning about Dimon’s ability to navigate the hearing. One person who wasn’t? Keene’s Bloomberg TV Surveillance guest Meredith Whitney. According to the analyst, Dimon be more than fine and while we’re on the subject, not that you asked, she can think of another bank CEO who’d crack under Congressional questioning on account of the fact that he doesn’t have Dimon’s eyes, which you could get lost in. Read more »
Lloyd C. Blankfein, chairman and chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs for the past six years, said it’s a “tough job to leave” and he’s unlikely to follow his predecessors into government. “When you think of my last five or six predecessors, five of them left because they went to the government,” he told reporters after participating in a discussion at the Chicago Club. “I would say the government isn’t going to call me up. So that means staying forever or dying at my desk.” [Bloomberg]
GC: That sunscreen's not gonna rub itself in
Would-Be Goldman Partners Will Have To Work Extra Hard This Year To Gain Brotherhood Of The Sach StatusBy Bess Levin
As Goldman Sachs shrinks, its elite inner circle will also be getting smaller. The Wall Street firm is expected to name fewer than 100 new partners this fall, one of the smallest classes in recent years, according to people briefed on the matter but not authorized to speak on the record…The selection process for new partners will heat up this summer, with current partners both nominating and vetting candidates. Goldman will make final decisions on the size of the class and who is in this fall, with an announcement most likely coming in November. [Dealbook]
Here is a fun thing we can do, which is put arbitrary numbers in a list and see how they look. Shall we? We shall.
First, here is how much various bank CEOs and assorted other miscreants made in 2011, if you don’t worry too much about what “made” and “in 2011″ mean*:
This list is, of course, inspired by this exercise by Bloomberg, ranking the top 50 highest paid financial institution CEOs. But if you’re Lloyd Blankfein or, I mean, really, Henry Kravis, you are probably not planning your retirement around your paycheck. Instead you could to some approximation view your job running your financial institution as keeping an eye on the people responsible for your private wealth, in the form of your share ownership in that institution, and Lloyd’s $16mm 2011 paycheck hardly makes up for the $155mm of lost value on his GS shares. Read more »
Time was, Jamie Dimon was the most popular CEO on Wall Street and America’s “Least Hated Banker,” for reasons that included the fact that the man has soulful blue eyes, charisma out the ass, and was in charge of one of the banks that a) didn’t go out of business during the financial crisis, like Lehman and Bear and b) supposedly didn’t actually need the bailout money the government made it take (as JD has said previously), like Bank of America and Citigroup. The man, in the hearts of many and especially the adoring press, could do no wrong. Which is why it probably stung a lot that Lloyd Blankfein, a Wall Street CEO who also possesses more charm than a person would know what do do with, who was also in charge of a bank that neither went out of business during the financial crisis nor required the bailout money it was forced to take (according to GS), and who is also the owner of a pair of baby blues, though in his case ones that sparkle, could only do wrong. And while LB is not one to gloat at another’s misfortune, especially that of a friend, he’s obviously feeling pretty good about being living proof of the old saying, “only one Wall Street CEO’s balls can be in a vise at a time,” and right now it’s JD’s turn. Read more »
Charlie Gasparino: Rumors Government Is Planning To Nail Four On Wall Street Probably Only Rumors But Listen Up AnywayBy Bess Levin
Point: “The latest urban legend to spread on trading desks and through the executive suites on Wall Street goes something like this: coming this fall, as President Obama makes his final push for a second term, his Justice Department will finally give the public what it wants in the form of an arrest of a major Wall Street figure for his role in the financial crisis. The men at the top of this “October Surprise” list are two of the more infamous figures in the banking business: former Lehman Brothers chief executive Dick Fuld and current Goldman Sachs chief executive Lloyd Blankfein. Using the Justice Department for political purposes is, of course, pretty sleazy.”
Counterpoint: “…But after speaking to my law enforcement sources — and you can throw people who work at the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Justice Department in this category — I give low probability for this urban legend coming to fruition.”
Regardless: Read more »
Back in February, a disturbing report was published claiming that Lloyd Blankfein had plans to step down from his position as CEO of Goldman Sachs “as early as this summer.” The idea of a world without Blankfein’s sass, twinkle, street roots, and I-am-unable-to-hold-back-exactly-what-I-think-of-what-you’re-saying-via-the-expression-on-my-face face was more than a little unpalatable and extremely tough to take. Luckily, we don’t have to. Appearing on CNBC earlier today, Lloyd told Gary Kaminksy that 1) former employee Greg Smith never brought up any of his gripes in 360 reviews and 2) he’s not going anywhere. Read more »