Stan O'Neal May Be Fired For What?

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So, as it turns out, Stan O'Neal might not be fired for turning Merrill Lynch into a subprime hedge fund. But he may be fired for talking to Wachovia about a merger without first consulting with Merrill's board. For reals!
"Facing billions of dollars in losses from the subprime mortgage crisis, Merrill Lynch chairman and chief executive, E. Stanley O’Neal, floated the idea of a merger with a large bank, a foray that angered Merrill’s board and could cost him his job, according to people close to the beleaguered Wall Street firm," New York Times hottie Jenny Anderson and some other dude report.
Why fire O'Neal over this talking out of turn thing rather than the massive losses? Pay attention! You see, the losses stemmed from decisions that board of directors of the bank approved. So they can't exactly fire Stan over that without admitting that they kind of suck too. But a phone call with someone at Wachovia that wasn't authorized by the board? That's it! He can totally be fired for that without indicting the board. The lesson: don't answer the phone. Ever. Ev.Er.
Actually, we're pretty sure this is such a cop-out that even Merrill's board couldn't really own up to it.
Merrill’s Chief Is Said to Consider a Bid to Merge [New York Times]

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