Lehman Mulls Pre-announcement

Author:
Publish date:

Lehman Brothers is considering preannouncing its third quarter financial results today, Charlie Gasparino of CNBC reports. Lehman was schedules to release its earnings next week.
"From what I understand they are not going to wait that long because of the insane movement in their stock," Gasparino said.
Lehman's stock had fallen around 40% at one point today, and the cost of credit default swaps on Lehman's debt blew out 110 basis points.
Presumably the pre-announcement would contain news that is less dire than the worst market fears, which include higher than expected write-downs and an inability to raise capital to make up for losses. But not everyone believes that Lehman will pre-announce, and there is some speculation that Lehman itself could be spreading the rumor of a pre-announcement in order to create the impression that things are better than feared and boost its stock.
We asked an investor who has no position in Lehman, either long or short, why Lehman might start false pre-announcement rumors. Wouldn't they just further damage their credibility? His theory is that Lehman could simply be attempting to buy time while it raises capital, and needs to boost its stock price in order to complete asset sales and possibly price a capital injection.
"With this kind of volatility, you can't really price anything. Lehman is asking more for Neuberger than the total market cap of the company. It's got to be disrupting the negotiations," he said. Any move which stabilizes the prices at a higher level than today's lows would assist Lehman in making a deal.

Related