Paul Krugman Hopes John Paulson Is To Blame For Today's Crash

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Based on a second-hand rumor that a big hedge fund's position is getting liquidated because of margin calls. With gold at a new record we'll guess not. Krugman himself allows that he'd like/hope for this to be the case on account of that BusinessWeek article that implied Paulson might be smarter than him from over a year ago.

Was That Mr. Margin On The Line? [NYT]

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John Paulson Ditches Banks, Drums Up Some Business For Them

I think everyone who's ever worked at an investment bank saw at least a little something of themselves in the Journal's fat asshole article this morning. My own feelings are mixed since, for me, investment banking was a lifestyle improvement over a previous job that left me partially paralyzed from overwork (true story! I got better). So in a sense I don't have that much to complain about, but I did, and do, constantly and loudly and now on the internet. Part of what sucks about banking - that I think the Journal article missed - is the frequent pointlessness of your activity: you get on a plane, go see a guy, tell him about this awesome merger or financing or whatever you've got planned for him, shake hands, and fly away never to see him again. And by "never" I mean "not until six months later, after he's printed a deal away from you, when you go and do the same thing, but this time maybe you don't shave." You'd probably still be a fat, stressed, overworked cabbie-puncher if most of your ideas actually got executed, but you'd perhaps be less suffused with metaphysical dread. That's how I'd feel anyway. Then, I blog now. Anyway, a thing that I don't know anything about, and never ever want to know anything about, so don't tell me, is the proper price-to-book trading multiples of life vs. P&C insurance companies and whether there's a conglomerate discount for being in both businesses. So with that as a disclaimer I found this pretty damn convincing: