threats

Several Swiss banks have threatened to freeze American clients’ accounts unless they prove they are, or take steps to become, tax compliant, as the country’s lenders hurry to resolve a tax evasion dispute with the US. The moves – made by a number of banks, according to three people familiar with the situation who did not disclose the identity of the banks involved – come before a deadline at the end of July for banks in a programme set up by the US Department of Justice last year to show which American clients conform to US tax requirements. However, the validity of the banks’ approach has split legal experts. [FT]

Jenkins, 52, is trying to revive profitability at the securities unit, the biggest source of income for the London-based firm, while wrestling with demands for higher pay from its bankers. He has fallen behind on targets he set as CEO and faces calls to outline a clear plan as he prepares to meet shareholders at the annual meeting next month…His efforts to revive profit have been hampered as revenue from trading bonds, currencies and commodities dwindles across the industry and regulators press Britain’s second-largest bank to increase capital or shrink assets to meet limits on leverage. Barclays’s full-year adjusted profit excluding one-time items as well as gains or losses on the value of the lender’s debt fell 32 percent to 5.2 billion pounds. The firm raised about 5.8 billion pounds in a rights offering in October. “There’s a feeling he has lost control of the business,” Christopher Wheeler, an analyst at Mediobanca SpA (MB) in London who last week cut Barclays to neutral from outperform, wrote in a March 24 note to clients. “The threat of an uncomfortable annual general meeting is becoming very real.” [Bloomberg]

You wanna play hardball? James Dimon is game. Read more »

  • 13 Feb 2012 at 8:03 PM

Moody’s Treads Where No Other Rating Agency Dare

“Moody’s Investors Service downgraded six European nations and became the first ratings firm to warn the U.K.’s rating could be at risk, citing the area’s weakening ability to implement measures aimed at reducing debt…Where Moody’s did deviate from recent actions by other ratings firms was in changing the outlook for the U.K. There had been no indication the U.K.’s outlook was necessarily in danger based on how other ratings firms view U.K.’s debt. Both S&P and Fitch have a stable outlook on their U.K. rating.” [WSJ]

Remember Nevin Shapiro? He’s the guy we named the Greatest Ponzi Schemer of All Time last August, over all other Ponzi schemers, Bernie included. While Madoff would have won if we were judging based on size alone, we weren’t. Shapiro took home the title because 1) with his ill-gotten gains, he made a name for himself in the University of Miami community and 2) he subsequently kicked things up a notch after being sent to jail, where he chose to fuck the Hurricanes’ football program raw, detailing the boatloads of prostitutes he bought for players (“I had the boat for prostitution situations”), the lavish meals he would treat them to at Benihanas, the “hit of the game” (Shapiro “put bounties on specific players, including Florida Gators quarterback Tim Tebow and a three-year standing bounty on Seminoles quarterback Chris Rix from 2002 to 2004, offering $5,000 to any player who knocked him out of a game”) and the dancer he gave $500 to have an abortion after she got knocked up by one of the athletes who he kept in the dark about the pregnancy (“I was doing him a favor–that idiot might have wanted to keep [the baby]”). Anyway, Nevs was pretty, pretty, pretty angry that none of his so-called boys stuck by him after the Ponzi charges came out, hence the disclosing of the hookers, etc and, apparently, he’s not finished letting everyone know how he feels. Read more »

  • 06 Feb 2012 at 2:49 PM

How Much Do You Bench? Your Job Might Depend On It

Several weeks back, Barclays CEO Bob Diamond said in an interview that his firm received “applications from 107,000 kids at university, of which we had positions for 1,500.” Diamond threw out the numbers to show that, despite profits not being what they used to, people still want to work on Wall Street. And, more to the point, that those currently employed in the financial services industry who’ve threatened to quit in the last month over bonuses that did not meet their expectations can and will be easily replaced. But perhaps the line didn’t work on you? Perhaps you shrugged off the “threat” of a bunch of faceless 21 year-olds with zero skills taking your job? While you may have been right to not quake in your boots over the vast majority of Diamond’s li’l worker bees, you might want to worry a little bit about one aspiring young junior mistmaker in particular. Read more »

Several executives and other employees in Jefferies Group Inc.’s prime-brokerage unit threatened to leave the firm in a dispute over issues including a recent restructuring and year-end compensation, people familiar with the matter said. The dispute led to a series of meetings Tuesday involving Jefferies executives and its global head of prime brokerage, Glen Dailey, the people said. Mr. Dailey, in response to questions from The Wall Street Journal, acknowledged the discussions but said no one was leaving, adding, “family affairs are now in order.” [WSJ, earlier, earlier]

Asked if he’d threatened to leave MF Global if the board did not trust his judgment on the European trade, Mr. Corzine said no. But he conceded he had “one specific conversation with a lead director which could have been interpreted that way.” [WSJ]