Opening Bell: 08.11.10

Author:
Publish date:

Goldman Sachs could be largely unaffected by financial overhaul (LA Times)
Recently, top Goldman executives privately advised analysts that the bank did not expect the reform measure to cost it any revenue. "The statement was perhaps surprising in its level of conviction," Guy Moszkowski wrote in a note to clients, "but we've learned to take such judgments from GS very seriously." Richard Bove said he had changed his view of the law's effect on Goldman. "I thought this company was going to be really harmed by this bill; now I've figured out that it's not going to happen," he said. "They should win big here."

Barclays Capital to slash jobs in cost-cuts (FT)
Barclays Capital is planning to cut up to several hundred employees following a sharp fall in market activity in the second quarter. Sources close to the bank say that the job losses, which could be announced as early as Wednesday, will be spread across back office and administrative functions that support BarCap businesses such as sales and trading.

H-P Board Surprised Hurd Didn't Go Quietly (WSJ)
In the days before his resignation, according to a person familiar with the matter, Mr. Hurd hired Sitrick & Co., a Los Angeles-based firm known for handling crisis communications for high-profile individuals, including former H-P chairman Patricia Dunn and celebrity Paris Hilton. H-P's directors "hoped he would move on," said one person familiar with the situation, adding that the board prefers to focus on "protecting the brand and taking the higher ground."

Hurd May Find Job In Private Equity, Recruiter Says (Bloomberg)
“There is a market for talented people,” Steven Kaplan, a professor at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business said in an interview. “As long as he didn’t do anything beyond what we know now has happened -- that he messed up his expenses and it was a one-time mistake, and not fraud or something worse -- he will be very attractive to private equity.”

The Playboy Spread of Jodie Fisher, the Woman Who Took Down HP's CEO (Gawker)
If that's something you're interested in.

Investors pull $3.7 bln from hedge funds in June (Reuters)
After adding $4 billion in May, after having pulled out $3.4 billion in April.

GM Expects Biggest Profit In Six Years (WSJ)
Light bulb time: "If you can make products people want to buy and they pay you more than they used to, you are going to make a lot of money," said David Whitson, an auto analyst with Morningstar.

JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater emerges from jail (NYDN)
"I knew there was a brouhaha about this, but while I was on the inside I didn't realize how much attention it got," said Slater, wearing the same T-shirt and plaid shorts he had on when arrested a day earlier. "I think something about this resonated with people. The outpouring of support is very appreciated. I'm overwhelmed, very thankful," Slater said after being released from the Vernon C. Bain Center in Hunts Point, the Bronx, after posting $2,500 bail. Relishing in his cult status, Slater even joked about his short stay in the slammer. "I feel tired, I feel about how I did when that suitcase fell on me." Then he pointed to cuts and bruises on his forehead that he called "aviation-related."

"New Yorkers Weigh In On Slater Case" (NYDN)

"I once saw a waitress slap a customer in the face with a steak and quit."

Morgan Stanley Fined Over Research Disclosures (AP)
The bank as fined $800,000 Tuesday by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority over failures to adequately disclose potential conflicts of interest in its analyst research notes. Morgan Stanley elf-reported the violations to FINRA, an independent regulator of investment companies.

Related

Opening Bell: 11.21.12

Germany Hints At More Financing (WSJ) Germany on Wednesday signaled its willingness to provide additional financing for the euro zone's bailout fund and accept lower interest on loans to Athens, in order to get the Greek rescue back on track and free the next tranche of about €44 billion ($56.40 billion) in loans for the euro zone's weakest member. Merkel Sees Chance For Greek Deal Monday (Reuters) "I believe there are chances, one doesn't know for sure, but there are chances to get a solution on Monday," Merkel told the Bundestag lower house of parliament in a debate on the German budget. But the longing for one act, one miracle solution, one truth that means all our problems are gone tomorrow...this will not be fulfilled. What was neglected over years, over decades, cannot be taken care of overnight and therefore we will need to continue to move step by step." H-P Says It Was Duped (WSJ) The technology giant said that an internal investigation had revealed "serious accounting improprieties" and "outright misrepresentations" in connection with U.K. software maker Autonomy, which H-P acquired for $11.1 billion in October 2011. "There appears to have been a willful sustained effort" to inflate Autonomy's revenue and profitability, said Chief Executive Meg Whitman. "This was designed to be hidden." Michael Lynch, Autonomy's founder and former CEO, fired back hours later, denying improper accounting and accusing H-P of trying to hide its mismanagement. "We completely reject the allegations," said Mr. Lynch, who left H-P earlier this year. "As soon as there is some flesh put on the bones we will show they are not true." Analysts Had Questioned Autonomy’s Accounting Years Ago (CNBC) Paul Morland, technology research analyst at broking and advisory house Peel Hunt, told CNBC that he had noticed three red flags in Autonomy’s accounts in the years leading up to the HP acquisition: poor cash conversion, an inflated organic growth rate, and the categorizing of hardware sales as software. London Bankers Become Landlords as Rents Hit Record (Bloomberg) Vivek Jeswani became a landlord by accident when Deutsche Bank AG (DBK) transferred him to New York two weeks after he moved into a new home in central London. Now back in the U.K., Jeswani views the apartment in Baker Street, the fictional home of Sherlock Holmes, as one of his best assets and is about to buy another home to expand his rental business. “There are no other investments as attractive and you’ve got some security if you’ve got an asset you can use yourself,” the 36-year-old risk officer at China Construction Bank Corp.’s U.K. unit said. “There’s a good yield over 5 percent and being in central London, you’ve got demand domestically and internationally.” Trading Charges Reach SAC (WSJ) The hedge funds reaped $276 million in profits and losses avoided based on that information, criminal and civil authorities said—far dwarfing that of any previous insider-trading case. The bulk of the trading profits generated by Mr. Martoma was paid to Mr. Cohen, a person close to the hedge fund said. Fed Still Trying To Push Down Rates (WSJ) Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke suggested that the central bank will keep trying to push down long-term interest rates in 2013, as federal tax and spending policies become a more substantial headwind to the U.S. economy. "We will continue to do our best to add monetary-policy support to the recovery," Mr. Bernanke said at the New York Economic Club, answering a question about how the Federal Reserve would respond to impending spending cuts or tax increases that might restrain economic growth. 'Stiletto Surgery' alters pinky toe for better fit (Fox) These days, some women will do just about anything to fit into their favorite pair of high heels – including surgery. A growing number of women are paying thousands of dollars to surgically alter their feet just to make wearing heels a more comfortable experience. Surgical procedures such as shortening toes, receiving foot injections and even completely cutting off pinky toes are on the rise. “Unless you’ve been there, and you can’t find shoes, and you’re in pain, don’t judge,” said Susan Deming, a patient who recently underwent a toe-shortening procedure. Adoboli’s Fate Decided at Wine Bar as UBS Market Bets Unraveled (Bloomberg) On a cool late summer evening last year in London’s financial district, with the euro-zone crisis worsening and Greece tottering on the edge of default, Kweku Adoboli says he asked the three traders who worked with him at UBS AG’s exchange-traded funds desk to join him for a drink. Adoboli said in a post on his Facebook page that he needed “a miracle” as his bets on the market imploded. That night at a wine bar across the street from their office, Adoboli asked John Hughes, the senior trader on the ETF desk, and two junior traders, what to do. The others decided he should take the blame for billions of dollars in losses and an elaborate web of secret trades in what he called an umbrella account that once held $40 million in hidden profits. “I knew I was going to lose my job anyway, I had already resigned myself to that, so fair enough,” the 32-year-old Adoboli testified last month about the meeting, which the other traders deny took place. Jobless Claims in U.S. Decrease (Bloomberg) Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits last week as damage to the labor market caused by superstorm Sandy began to subside. Jobless claims decreased by 41,000 to 410,000 in the week ended Nov. 17, the Labor Department reported today in Washington. The number of applications matched the median forecast of 48 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Soros Buying Gold as Record Prices Seen on Stimulus (Bloomberg) The metal will rise every quarter next year and average $1,925 an ounce in the final three months, or 11 percent more than now, according to the median of 16 analyst estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Paulson & Co. has a $3.66 billion bet through the SPDR Gold Trust, the biggest gold-backed exchange- traded product, and Soros Fund Management LLC increased its holdings by 49 percent in the third quarter, U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings show. 'Cannibal Cop' Gilberto Valle planned to to cook up 'some girl meat' on Thanksgiving (NYDN) The "Cannibal Cop" had his own twist for a Thanksgiving dinner this year — cooking up “some girl meat,” prosecutors revealed Tuesday. Gilberto Valle, 28 — who allegedly kept a database of at least 100 women he plotted to rape, cook and eat — planned the freakish feast with one of his online conspirators earlier this year, prosecutors said. “I’m planning on getting me some girl meat,” he wrote to his pal on Feb. 9. “Really tell me more,” responded the friend. “It’s this November, for Thanksgiving. It’s a long way off but I’m getting the plan in motion now,” Valle wrote.