Lampert May Avoid Obama Tax Increase With $829 Million Hedge Fund Payout (Bloomberg)
ESL and affiliates distributed about $829 million of stock in Sears Holdings Corp., AutoNation Inc. and AutoZone Inc. to him on June 2, according to regulatory filings. The fund is scheduled to transfer more shares in the retailers to Lampert by the end of July. By taking direct ownership of the shares, Lampert would be taxed at the capital-gains rate of 15 percent when the stock is sold, rather than the ordinary income rate of 39.6 percent that his fund would have to pay under the bill, according to Robert Willens, whose New York-based firm analyzes tax and accounting rules for Wall Street clients.
Bernanke Economy Seems On Track (WSJ)
"There seems to be a good bit of momentum in consumer spending and investment," Mr. Bernanke said at a dinner hosted by the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. "My best guess is we'll have continued recovery, but it won't feel terrific."
Robert Prechter: Gold could fall 40 percent from peak (Reuters)
Prechter said at the Reuters Investment Outlook Summit in New York that recent readings of gold market psychology showed a 98 percent bullishness in the metal, the highest ever recorded for any physical commodity. He said, however, that technical momentum was stalling for gold as the rate of increase had peaked in 2006, and that each subsequent rally since then has risen at a slower rate. "That is not a guarantee of change but a sign that one is likely...In terms of timing, the time to get excited about gold was back in 2001 when no one wanted it, and now everyone seems to want it, so I don't."
FCIC Rip Goldman Sachs' Paper Chase (NYP)
"This has been a very deliberate effort over time to run out the clock," said FCIC Vice Chairman Bill Thomas. A fired-up Thomas yesterday said the commission has no intention of giving Goldman a chance to make itself look cooperative. "I'm not interested in providing [Blankfein] with a public forum to sound reasonable when in fact [Goldman's] behavior has not been."
Macquarie Faces Top-Level Exodus (FT)
Analysts and people close to the bank said some top staff were assessing whether to jump ship after being told last month that their bonuses would be six-figure sums rather than the hoped-for seven figures. “Macquarie is in a horrible situation,” said Brian Johnson, a banking analyst at CLSA, the Hong Kong-based brokerage, and long-time Macquarie bull. “There is a war for talent and we are in an environment where some bulge bracket firms have doubled their managing directors’ base pay.”
Hayward Moves Into Obama Line Of Fire (FT)
Obama said that if he were in charge of BP, the chief executive, “wouldn’t be working for me after any of those statements" (the ones when Hayward said he just wanted to kick back and relax but can't 'cause of this whole spill thingy).
Banking Veterans To Offer Fund With Cut-Rate Fees (Globe And Mail)
East Coast will charge no management fee for initial investors who put money in before July 1. After that, the fee will rise, but still be “very aggressive” and remain under 2 per cent, Mr. Schumacher said. “We think 2 and 20 is ridiculous,” he added.
Blackwater Seeks New Owner (NPR)
Make them an offer.
In The Background, Three Men Craft Financial Reform (WSJ)
Geithner! Dodd! Frank! After they finish this they're taking their boy band show on tour.
Swiss House Rejects UBS Pact (UBS)
The rejection is a defeat for the Swiss government, which had hoped to put the battle with the U.S. behind it. If an agreement isn't reached before Swiss parliament adjourns later this month, the deal between the U.S. and UBS could be voided and the U.S. could launch new tax cases. It also complicates UBS's efforts to rehabilitate its image and revamp its wealth-management unit, which has seen an exodus of clients in part due to the U.S. tax scandal.