Trading stocks in pennies may be easy and efficient, but boy is it dull. So your friends at the Securities and Exchange Commission are batting around some ideas to spice things up without making your brains hurt too much. Read more »
Who should replace Ben S. Bernanke as Chairman of the Federal Reserve when his term ends in January 2014? If anyone cared to ask us, we’d say no one: we like our Fed Chairman soft-spoken, bearded, and just as comfortable in dad jeans as they are in their bespoke Jos. A. Bank suits. But nobody asked and, according to Andrew Ross Sorkin, Bernanke has told “close friends” that regardless of whether or not Obama wins a second term, he’s ready to move on. Apparently qualified successors are few and far between and while Larry Summers is said to be “at the top of the list,” the fact that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner may finally be granted freedom from his own personal Guantanamo Bay and will also necessitate a replacement who will have to work closely with the new Fed Chair poses some staffing issues, on account of the perception that Summers is somewhat difficult to work with. Read more »
Over the past six months or so, Wall Street has laid off a whole bunch of people. Unfortunately, having a job at this very moment does not mean you will 3 months hence. More cuts are a’ coming and according to Rochdale analyst Dick Bové, a lot more. What kind of numbers is he talking about? Let’s see. Morgan Stanley said yesterday that come 2012, 1,600 employees will be relieved of their responsibilities to the firm. Citi is getting rid of 4,000. RBS will be letting a buch of staff go, too, though the Brits have not said how many. Let’s assume a few other firms will add a couple thousand bodies to the count. How many did you get? ‘Cause after carrying the one, Bové estimates “at least another 150,000 will be fired in 2012,” and while no, he won’t show his work, he will tell you this: the government is loving this. Read more »
Off the top of our heads, we can’t name one woman in a prominent position at a quant shop. Maybe this is why.
Math 55 is advertised in the Harvard catalog as “probably the most difficult undergraduate math class in the country.” It is legendary among high school math prodigies, who hear terrifying stories about it in their computer camps and at the Math Olympiads. Some go to Harvard just to have the opportunity to enroll in it. Its formal title is “Honors Advanced Calculus and Linear Algebra,” but it is also known as “math boot camp” and “a cult.” The two-semester freshman course meets for three hours a week, but, as the catalog says, homework for the class takes between 24 and 60 hours a week.
Math 55 does not look like America. Each year as many as 50 students sign up, but at least half drop out within a few weeks. As one former student told The Crimson newspaper in 2006, “We had 51 students the first day, 31 students the second day, 24 for the next four days, 23 for two more weeks, and then 21 for the rest of the first semester.” Said another student, “I guess you can say it’s an episode of ‘Survivor’ with people voting themselves off.” The final class roster, according to The Crimson: “45 percent Jewish, 18 percent Asian, 100 percent male.”
Why Can’t a Woman Be More Like a Man? [The American]