This country loves the smoking memo. Loves the mere scent of the ignored warning to disaster. Loves the sting of accusation when it attaches to the retrospectively blind actor who missed the whispers from the tea leaves. Loves Markopolis. Loves seeing the SEC on the hot seat for missing the obvious. For ignoring the... the "smoking memo." Loves the ignored FBI memo warning, vaguely, on the looming dangers to the United States. No surprise then that revelations that Jack Nash warned J. Erza Merkin "numerous times over the years" that something was amiss in Chateau Madoff would produce Dealbook entries on same:
Mr. Nash, the former chairman of the investment giant Oppenheimer & Company and a pioneer of the modern hedge fund industry, had briefly invested with Mr. Madoff in the early 1990s, but pulled his cash out after a closer look raised red flags about the man who last month admitted to running an enormous Ponzi scheme.
According to the civil lawsuit against Mr. Merkin filed Monday by New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo, Mr. Nash told Mr. Merkin numerous times over the years that he was suspicious of the steady profits Mr. Madoff posted.
We wonder, some, where the story is. "Numerous" warnings over the years that someone is "suspicious of the steady profits," is hardly a smoking memo. But then, perhaps we haven't seen all the memos?
Merkin Was Warned by a Wall Street Legend [DealBook]