Who Wants To Buy A Specialist Firm?


Under the tutelage of Chief John Thain, the floor of the New York Stock Exchange has (d)evolved into a) one big computer and b) a tourist attraction for the Colonial Williamsburg-going set in New York for the week. Specialists have been rendered unnecessary, unless they’re giving tours, selling souvenirs. Accepting this shift in climate, LaBranche & Co. officially put itself on the block today. The largest trading firm on the Exchange, LaB’s stock is down nearly 20% this year and said yesterday that it will post a second-quarter loss due to a “substantial” write down of its specialist business (its business on the AMEX has already been sold).
Fortress Investment Group is said to have a possible interest in LaBranche, which has a market cap of about $486 million. Bid on a piece of this living museum today!
Earlier: NYSE Jumps The Shark

Trading Places
[New York Post]