Opening Bell: 03.19.10

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Alarm Was Raised On Lehman (FT)
Former Merrill Lynch officials said they contacted regulators about the way Lehman measured its liquidity position for competitive reasons. The Merrill officials said they were coming under pressure from their trading partners and investors, who feared that Merrill was less ­liquid than Lehman.

Norway CEOs, Analysts, Inmates Compete in ‘Dead Hard’ Ski Race (Bloomberg)
The Birkebeiner, Norway’s annual cross-country ski race, is attracting a record turnout, with chief executive officers and prison inmates lining up among tomorrow’s 16,150 participants. Pareto AS Chief Executive Officer Svein Stoele, former Aker Exploration ASA head Lars Thorrud, 48, and First Securities ASA’s 51-year-old Chief Strategist Peter Hermanrud, ranked second in Kapital magazine’s list of Norwegian analysts this year, are signed up for the 54-kilometer (34-mile) race. So are seven inmates from Hassel prison. The race has gained prestige, with contestants often including it on their resumes.

Bank of America Taps Goldman Director for China Post (WSJ)
Edmund Sim has been named a director for its China equity capital markets team.

Website's instant posts of Wall Street research banned (Reuters)
A Manhattan federal judge on Thursday barred the financial news service Theflyonthewall.com from issuing immediate news about analyst research from several Wall Street banks, often before recommendations are shared with clients. Ruling in favor of Bank of America Corp's Merrill Lynch unit, Barclays Plc and Morgan Stanley, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote said Theflyonthewall.com engaged in "systematic misappropriation," essentially getting a "free ride" from its quick publication of upgrades and downgrades that can move stocks higher and lower. Cote issued a permanent injunction requiring the Summit, New Jersey-based company to wait until 10 a.m. to report research from the three banks that was issued before the market opens, and at least two hours for research issued thereafter.

Is That A Jawbone In Your Ear? (CNBC)
The "hottest" in Bluetooth earpieces. So you can look one part asshole 3 parts douchebag.

Fed officials warn against loss of bank oversight (Reuters)
A financial regulatory overhaul bill unveiled in the U.S. Senate this week would diminish the powers of most of the regional Fed districts and leave some with no banks to oversee. "It is a travesty," Thomas Hoenig, president of the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank, told a bankers' group. "It is absolutely disenfranchising our relationship with a very important, hugely important, sector outside of Wall Street across the United States."

How bad is it? Check out the photo Reuters used to illustrate this story.


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