As you may have heard, the last number of months have been a bit tough on hedge fund manager Steve Cohen. In November, one of his former employees, Mathew Martoma, was accused of orchestrating “the most lucrative insider trading scheme ever,” in a criminal complaint in which Cohen was referenced as Portfolio Manager A. A week later, the Times lopped 21,000 square feet off his house. Earlier this month, he had the pleasure of setting the record for the largest insider trading fine ever, at $614 million, a sum that does not even put this whole thing behind him, as the settlement “doesn’t preclude the Securities and Exchange Commission from pursuing Cohen himself in the future.” So you’ll excuse the Big Guy if he felt the need to indulge in a little retail therapy recently. Read more »
New Strip Club Offers Financial Services Employees Classy Experience With Non-“Tacky” Girls, Lax Policy On Crotch GrazingBy Bess Levin
Are you sick of strip clubs that lack sophistication and taste? Do you want to go to a place where you can pay for lap dances from girls who really (no, really!) like you? Are you craving Italian? Today’s your lucky day.
It’s Thursday night at the dimly lit Financial District club Quest, and a 29-year-old male investment banker and a 22-year-old gallery girl in a short, tight sweater dress exchange flirtatious banter. Her favorite artist is Picasso. He’s always had a fondness for the Midwest, where she grew up. “You’re a good egg,” the banker says. “You’re a good egg, too,” she responds with a coy smile. They get another round, while dudes in crew-neck sweaters awkwardly linger by the bar, shelling out $18 a drink, and a group of girls dance by themselves in a circle to Rihanna’s “S&M,” some with plates of baked ziti in hand.
Fifteen minutes later, the young man finally musters the courage to ask her for a dance. “Sure,” she says. “It’s $20 a song.” He nods assent, and she grabs his hand and leads him to a back room. There, dozens of guys are seated thigh-to-thigh on three long rows of red banquettes, while nearly nude girls in their early 20s gyrate atop them, the men groping with wild abandon. Welcome to Saint Venus Theater — a roving amateur strip club that caters mainly to young finance guys looking for a less tacky, more girl-next-door stripping experience. Launched in 2009 by a man known to his employees as “Rob S.,” a mysterious character who favors a top hat and long ponytail, Saint Venus started off as a members-only, application-based strip den for a small group of Rob’s financier friends. Since then, it has grown, largely by word-of-mouth among its high-spending and attractive clientele, as a much-whispered-about alternative to the typically trashy strip club.
Whereas at a typically trashy strip club, the ladies appear to be in it solely for the cash, at Saint Venus, patrons get the sense the girls they’re financially compensating for their time actually want to be there and would stick around even if they weren’t getting paid.1 Read more »
Okay, back to the live-blog.
Geoffrey Raymond, the artist who’s done everyone from Jimmy Cayne, Dick Fuld, Alan Greenspan (collectively known as “The Greats”) to Lloyd Blankfein and Ben Bernanke has a new painting out. It’s of Meredith Whitney and a bull, and here’s how Raymond describes it: “Surely you remember Picasso’s ‘Dora and the Minotaur’ from that art appreciation course you took back when, yes? Well I’ve reinterpreted this classic, bending it to serve his own twisted agenda. The result? ‘Meredith Whitney Grapples with the Next Big Prediction.'” The portrait is available for you to buy and hang over your mantle (best offer over $3,500 takes it home) and you can see it here: Read more »