Oz Fund's Shocking Losses Shock No One

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Basis Capital told investors yesterday that losses from its Yield Fund will likely exceed 80 percent. BC claimed it was unable to “accurately estimate” the value of units in the fund, probably the firm’s calculators and abacuses were among the manifold assets it was forced to sell due to pressure from creditors. (Managers Steven Howell and Stuart Fowler said the fund would not deign to count on its fingers, no matter how bad things get). As of last month, losses were at 50%.
In 2004, Basis was named Macquarie Bank Ltd.’s “Skilled Manager of the Year, and “Fund of the Year” in 2005. It’s not just about redemptions and losses anymore. It’s about trophies and plaques. (Apropos: In September, DealBreaker will be hosting an awards dinner, with prizes given out to the hedge funds that have, in our eyes, set new precedents for failing with aplomb. Please send your nominations to tips at dealbreaker dot com.)
Basis Capital Tells Investors Loss May Exceed 80% [Bloomberg]

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No One Told Ken Lewis Shareholders Needed To Know About Merrill's Massive Losses, Okay?

Remember in 2008, when Ken Lewis was all, “Oooh, wait, I don’t know about this Merrill Lynch thing, it looks kinda bad, I don’t think I want to buy it anymore, I’m nervous [bites nails, shifts weight from one foot to the other like he has to pee]” and tried to back out of the deal? And Hank Paulson threatened to stuff him in a meat locker if he did so Lewis said okay, fine, I’ll buy it and then did, without mentioning anything to shareholders about Merrill's impending losses? Well 1) People are still upset about it but 2) Ken was under the impression shareholders were on a need to know basis. Top executives at Bank of America Corp did not tell shareholders just prior to a 2008 vote on its purchase of Merrill Lynch & Co that losses were mounting and expected to weigh down earnings for years, papers filed in private shareholder litigation show. But the bank and former Chief Executive Kenneth Lewis said in their own court papers that they should not be liable to shareholders who claimed to have lacked information they needed to vote on the once $50 billion merger. Lewis also said he had been advised by the bank's law firm and chief financial officer that no disclosure was necessary. No further questions. BofA masked Merrill loss before 2008 vote: filings [Reuters]