• 21 May 2008 at 8:36 AM
  • women

Is Progress For Women On Wall Street Hopeless?

Women of Wall Street.jpgWall Street’s “huge and persistent” gender gap continues to befuddle the best laid plans for achieve something at least approximating gender equality in finance. We’re supposedly far beyond the days of rank harassment and sexism, yet women continue to underperform–earning less, leaving more and less frequently rising to the top of their banks and brokerages–when compared to men. This continues despite of some truly incredible efforts on the parts of Wall Street institutions to recruit, retain and promote women.
“The most annoying thing about all of this is that it strikes against the idea of a meritocracy. We’re always taught that if you work hard and have a good education, you can transcend everything. Why is progress at a standstill?” Heidi Moore of the Wall Street Journal asked recently.
After the jump, we explore the age old question: What do women want?

Read more »

  • 24 Sep 2007 at 2:35 PM
  • women

We Still Think A Women’s Forum Should Be Held In The Kitchen

women in kitchen.jpgIn the Anglo-Western world, financial institutions left and right are patting themselves on the back for adding more of that “other” gender to their echelons of upper-management.
According the Financial News Online, “The number of female directors on the boards of the 20 banks surveyed has increased by 75%, from 20 to 35, and the overall percentage of female directors has risen from 7.7% to 12.3%. More than half of the respondents increased the number of female directors in the past five years.”
And according to a diversity survey conducted by Financial News, it’s important for banks to hire more women and for these banks to encourage support groups to “mentor” women. Because clearly, the fairer sex needs more mentoring…?

Women Gain Larger Presence on Banks’ Boards
Banks bring in more women as directors [Financial News]
Do Women Belong In The Kitchen? [Askmen.com]

  • 24 Sep 2007 at 9:13 AM
  • women

2007 Playmate of the Year On Investing

Actually, not off to a bad start. She’s in two mutual funds.
And, sorry, Jim Cramer. She’s never heard of you.
TheStreet.com Video [TheStreet.com]
Hat tip to Crossing Wall Street.]

  • 31 Aug 2007 at 9:27 AM
  • women

Women Are Powerful

power women.JPG
Do you agree with Forbes’ list of the 100 most powerful women? Merkel is #1, fine, but Oprah below the CEO of Rite Aid (the logic here is that America’s housewives need their prescription refills to tolerate the massive emotional swings required of an Oprah viewing without lighting themselves on fire)? Ruth Bader Ginsburg below the CEO of Sara Lee (deliciousness is never un-constitutional). Hillary Clinton below ‘I am important in my own special and deserved way’ Melinda Gates? Queen Elizabeth II at #23 (ok, we don’t know if we’d put her higher or lower, but we love the fact that her occupation is “Queen”). The ghost of Nina Wang conspicuously absent from the list? No Melanie Griffith’s character from “Working Girl”? No Rosie the Riveter?
Forbes’ List of Most Powerful Penis-Lackers Contains Some Unexpected Surprises [Defamer]
The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women [Forbes]

Dana Vachon’s Women of Wall Street, With Penelope Trunk

womenofwallstreetmarieclaire.jpgWe were getting a pedicure yesterday and were thus in closer proximity to a stack of horrible women’s magazines than we usually like to be. Since they’re all the same mindless trash, we randomly selected the Marie Claire with a hungry-looking Ashley Olsen cover girl off the top and set to work educating ourselves about “women who choose starter husbands,” whether or not “Botox ages you” and “Grandpa crushes.” (This is an actual quote: “Donald Sutherland is hot. And not in the ‘he’s a great actor’ way. In the ‘we’d like to strip the 72-year-old down to his sock garters and get crazy with him’ way. In fact, a poll taken at a recent mojito night revealed that every woman in our office has a grandpa crush, even the ones without major daddy issues.” Like a trip to Idiot Island, isn’t it?). Anyway, just as the pederist started massaging our legs, we came across “A Field Guide to Wall Street Women,” by Dana Vachon. Obviously, we had to continue.
Seems there are four types on women on the Street: the Social Commando, the Ivy Beleaguered, the Nuptualista, and the Big Swinging Chick.
The Social Commando, according to Monsieur Vachon, hails from Los Angeles, Houston or San Francisco, works in sales, wears DVF wrap dresses, counts the $50 mojito pitcher as her signature cocktail, and has a life expectancy on Wall Street of 2-3 years. Commando goes commando so as to mix things up around the office, disarms with “charm” (read: breasts), and sleeps with as many co-workers as time will allow. Vachon says that Commando has a Brazilian ex-boyfriend named Nacho, though all of the Commandos we’re familiar with have always had a penchant for a more Aryan breed of man. Agree to disagree. Commando doesn’t stress about getting reports in on time, because that’s not what she’s there for, she’s there to have fun, which might explain why she’s been to rehab three times. Commando is everything Penelope Trunk has always wanted you to be, except she doesn’t dress halfway between a man and a harlot, she just dresses like a harlot.

Read more »

  • 02 Aug 2007 at 3:00 PM
  • Lehman

Getting Ahead Without Giving Head

heels.bmpLet’s say you’re a lady, working in the business world. You want to get ahead but doing so by conventional means like working hard is such hard work and we live in a patriarchal society that will always value the penis over performance. Just what’s a girl to do? The Wall Street Journal suggests putting on a pair of stilettos, because “high heels indicate power,” so much so that you might even morph into a man.
But it’s not just the added height that’ll get you to the top of our next bonus bumper. It’s that high heels offer an “inherent contradiction” (am I tall or am I short, I do not know). According to the Journal, ‘lettos “make us more fragile, but conquering them to stride alongside men in their sensible flats creates mystique.” This is not a joke—men will marvel—yes marvel— at the fact that you can walk just as fast as them—if not faster— in those things. Some—the ones who believe that hobbits are real—will scratch their heads and say, “She must have magic feet.” Ca-ching.
Kristen Bentz, who worked at Lehman Brothers for several years, recalls a senior executive stepping into an elevator, staring at her chocolate-brown crocodile four-inch pointy-toe pumps and asking, “Where do the toes go?” He was confused, scared and turned on. Ca-ching. (What he—Dick Fuld, one presumes—didn’t know, was that Ms. Bentz does not in fact have toes).

Read more »

  • 15 Jun 2007 at 10:53 AM
  • CFOs

C(heart)LBY an expert in managed care of wives, mistresses

david colby.jpg Details are emerging about the May resignation of WellPoint CFO David Colby. Colby was forced to resign after his 10 year stint by WellPoint Chairman, President, Secretary of the Exchequer, CEO, and Grand Poobah Larry Glasscock for violating the company’s code of conduct.
The Colbinator was a pretty big deal in the managed care sector, named the best managed care CFO in America in 2006 for the third year in a row by an Institutional Investor survey of portfolio managers and equity research analysts. He was pulling down $740k a year and just had another $1.6mm of options lumped on his equity plan (and he got quite a nice sum from the $200mm executive bonus pool up for grabs after the WellPoint/Anthem deal).
WellPoint won’t comment on Colby’s specific conduct violations, but let’s just say Colby’s lifestyle was a bit “alternative.” The life of David Colby included jetting around, housing, and proposing to a number of women during his tenure as CFO. If you ever wondered how it’s possible to cheat on a mistress, look no further than David Colby.
Up until last week, Colby was engaged to two women, and not yet divorced from his second wife. Aside from the two fiances and second wife, Colby was housing another women, Rita DiCarlo, in his 7,500 sq. ft. Lake Sherwood house. Rita had been shacking up in the ColbyDome for almost 2 years while driving around Colby’s 1998 Jag with C(heart)LBY vanity plates (that’s not a joke). She’s now suing Colby for the house.
Colby wasn’t shy when it came to sweeping 20-something WellPoint employees off their feet, from the Los Angeles Times:

Sarah Waugh said she met Colby in 1998 when she was a 22-year-old temporary worker at WellPoint’s offices in Thousand Oaks, where she later landed a permanent job. Their romantic liaison began at a company party at the Westin Bonaventure in downtown Los Angeles in early 2001, she said, where she felt “like quite a big deal” because Colby danced with her.

Wife #1 divorced Colby after finding out about 2 extramarital affairs. Wife #2 won’t comment as to why she wants to take herself private.
Although WellPoint doesn’t hate the player, it hates the game, which included jetting the women around on business trips (although WellPoint comments that company money was not used for Colby’s business travel companions).
Wayne DeVeydt took over for Colby as CFO and Angela Braly took over as CEO for Glasscock in some unrelated managerial shuffling on June 1. Glasscock retains the rest of his WellPoint positions.
Women claim lives with WellPoint exec [Los Angeles Times]
WellPoint CFO David Colby Ousted On Conduct Violation; Wayne DeVeydt Named New CFO [ RTT News]

  • 22 Mar 2007 at 12:11 PM
  • women

The Final Frontier of Feminism

gap.jpgThere’s a reason suffrage should’ve never passed and this is it: ever since women were given the right to vote, they think this victory accords them the voice to demand everything afforded to men, even if it’s not something to be desired. You don’t see men out there picketing for multiple orgasms and there’s a reason for that— they don’t want them. Who’s got the time?
Today’s WSJ article, “Dress Code of Silence” serves this point magnificently. It discusses the tearjerker of a fact that women have the raw end of the deal in terms of modes of dress in the workplace, namely in the financial sector. While “their male counterparts may sport ‘business casual’ khakis, many women on Wall Street feel they must toe a careful and conservative line.” One woman, a banker for Citigroup, even showed up to a purportedly “casual” event and got the wag of the finger for her attire, while her male colleagues got pats on the back and rounds of scotch for dressing themselves (one assumes) in “chinos and Izods.” Why don’t we fight to wear rainbow flip flops or flipped-collar Polos while we’re at it? Topsiders. Ribbon belts.
Que? This is the battle? To get to wear khakis? The sartorial embodiment of a terrible breed of human being? That’s just wrong. Women apparently “feel obliged to dress up in order to command authority,” which is concerning for several reasons, chiefly because it’s difficult to remember the last time we interfaced with someone (man or woman) wearing khakis and said to ourselves, “check out the pantaloons on that guy (or girl)—now that’s someone to reckon with.”

Read more »