James Gorman's poker performance indicates he's unlikely to run the firm into the ground.
Gorman, a man who has pared risk and made Morgan Stanley a more balanced institution, seems unlikely to make the sort of big bet that either propels the firm into a new golden age -- or torpedoes it. He's a more cautious and consistent player than that. Here's how his friend Ken Buckfire, CEO of investment bank Miller Buckfire, describes Gorman's performance in a summer poker game that's been going on the better part of two decades: "He's usually up a few bucks but never the big winner." For Morgan Stanley in 2011, that may be just the kind of approach that's called for.
It's unclear if the Dollar Dominatrix knew about this when she took a shiv to MS's earnings last week.