As you’ve probably heard by now, Alan “Ace” Greenberg, former Chairman and CEO of Bear Stearns, who was later named “vice chairman emeritus” of JP Morgan, died today at the age of 86. While he paid the bills with his finance gig, his true passion was magic. On this day, let us remember some favorite facts about Greenberg, vis-à-vis his time on the magic circuit. Read more »
Former Bear Stearns Chairman Ace Greenberg Came Up With The Idea For The New Yorker Pickpocket Profile, Holds Monthly “Gatherings” For The World’s Foremost MagiciansBy Bess Levin
Perhaps, some of you thought, that as he pushes 90, former Bear Stearns Chairman and CEO Alan “Ace” Greenberg would slow down a bit, as people his age tend to do. Retiring from his job at JPMorgan seemed unlikely– he’s only 85, after all– but maybe he’d dial back his time on the magic circuit. Perform old tricks for colleagues, strangers, and friends, rather than new. Just generally not stay up to date on the latest trends in magicianry. Luckily, these baseless assumptions could not be further from the truth. In fact, Ace is sharper than ever, routinely humiliating those half (and even one-sixth) his age while teaching them the ropes in an alley behind JPM HQ. How does he do it? By keeping himself engaged with the upper echelons of the magic community, for whom he hosts a regular salon d’enchantment each month. Read more »
Hedge Fund Manager Eric Rosenfeld’s Children’s Book About Asses Also Has An Economics Lesson Found WithinBy Bess Levin
Yesterday we discussed Mrs. Buttkiss, the story of a woman with a “huge” ass, a dirty little secret, and what happens one day when she lets it out in the fruit aisle of a grocery store. Mrs. Buttkiss and The Big Surprise isn’t just any old children’s book about asses but one conceived of by Crescendo Partners founder Eric Rosenfeld, whose tale of asses and the magic they hold had been brewing for over ten years. (For those of you not up to speed on the storyline, see my summary in comments 52, 55, and 57 here). It’s also one of the few books you can currently purchase that comes with a free whoppie cushion. We had a little chat with the auteur, who claims to have no calls on FDP, about his process.
Is this an allegory for the financial crisis? Bubbles, etc?
A lot of people seem to think that but I came up with the story ten years ago, way before the financial crisis.
Ten years ago the seeds were already being sown. A bunch of Alan Greenspan’s friends knew what was happening. It definitely could’ve been about the crisis.
That wasn’t the original intent but it’s fine with me if people want to think about it that way.
Is it about LTCM?
That’s a different Eric Rosenfeld who worked there.
It could still be about John Meriwether. His gastroenterologist loves to talk. Anyway…you said you came up with this story when you were putting your kids to bed. What happened that night that this was the story you came up with?
I was just trying to make up a story I thought they’d like.
Kids like this sort of thing?
Oh yeah. Kids ages 2-12 think it’s hilarious. What did you think of it? Read more »
When you’re a big time hedge fund manager, it’s important to have outlets through which to blow off the stress of the markets. Some buy art. Some play golf. Others fuck hookers. A very small group write books, usually related to what they do all day. Crescendo Partners founder Eric Rosenfeld knew he wanted to add author to his list of occupations but he wasn’t much interested in talking about the money making game. He wanted to tell a richer, more meaningful story. A story about a woman with a huge ass, and a dirty little secret. Read more »
Hint: the one he hasn’t been trading emails with is the guy who tried to sell you some schwag in the alley behind 383 yesterday during lunch. Also, for the animal lovers in the group.
A few weeks ago I told you to mark your calendars for the social event of the year. At the time I said it was the SAC Capital Giant Balloon Inflation Party. I lied. The balloon blowing is still going on (this Saturday in fact) but it is not the extravaganza you need to drop all previously made plans for. Do you know what’s going to happen on December 8th? I don’t think you do otherwise you’d be working yourselves into a frenzy along with me. I’m not even sure you’re fully prepared for what I’m about to lay on your asses and you probably never will be so I’m just going to say it now: STEVE COHEN MAGIC NIGHT. And when I say “STEVE COHEN MAGIC NIGHT” I mean it in two ways. First, Steve Cohen, the magician. Second, Steve Cohen, the man who makes the world a more magical place by simply existing. That’s right–doubly penetrated by magical SC’s.
Outsiders probably think in-depth research and a top notch ability to get information first was the “edge” that Galleon “pressured” traders and analysts to go after in their pursuit of big returns but based on the outbursts of one of the firm’s top employees? Kinda sounds like the fund was also keenly aware of the importance of rubbing rabbit feet and finding four-leaf clovers before executing trades, as well as the perils of allowing black cats to run amuck on the floor.
According to the Journal senior trader Leon Shaulov (previously employed with Sagamore Hill Capital and Goldman Sachs), and not Rajaratnam, was the guy you didn’t want to cross if you came into the office without the good stuff. Shaulov would verbally abuse those who couldn’t get enough material non-public information to make a buck, which seems standard. Who doesn’t do that? What really got Leo’s goat, however, apparently had nothing to do with people slacking on fact-finding missions. What set Shaulov off was jerk-offs who brought (actual) curses on the House of Galleon.