Morgan Stanley Suggests CNBC Check Themselves Before They Wreck Themselves

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Although the Morgan Stanley's handling of the social media site’s disastrous stock offering is under scrutiny by just about every business news outlet under the sun, a Wall Street insider tells us the investment banking's corporate communications warriors are blaming CNBC for engaging in some pre-IPO hyping of their own. CNBC senior vice president and editor in chief Nik Deogun “is under fire,” says the source. “Morgan Stanley is telling him, ‘How dare you criticize us when you guys promoted this IPO worse than anybody.’ ” The source recalls examples of CNBC’s on-air exuberance in the days leading up to the IPO, including treating Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg ’s entrance at the kick-off of the company’s investors road show at the Sheraton hotel in midtown as if it were “the President’s State of the Union Address” with multiple cameras and reporters. Then on May 17, the day before the actual IPO, the hosts of CNBC’s “Fast Money” appeared on camera wearing hoodies — a reference to Zuckerberg’s favorite fashion item, which came off like an homage to the baby billionaire. That same day, controversial “Mad Money” host Jim Cramer told his viewers, who tend to be mom-and-pop investors and market-playing college students, “If you can get in on the actual IPO, then I think Facebook is a no-brainer.” He added: “We all know this one’s going to pop like crazy on its first day of trading, so if you can get in on the deal, I think you should try to get your hands on as many shares as possible.”...CNBC spokesman Brian Steel said: "CNBC's Facebook coverage has been widely acknowledged as fair, balanced and insightful." [NYDN, related, related]

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Confidential To The Haters: Check Back In With James Gorman About Facebook In A Year

Until then, step off, bitch. Morgan Stanley Chairman and Chief Executive James Gorman defended the securities firm's role in Facebook's tumultuous initial public offering, telling employees internally that the firm worked "100% within the rules" and calling the steep decline in Facebook's stock "disappointing." Mr. Gorman, in a weekly strategy meeting Tuesday that was later webcast to employees, said "speculation of nefarious activity" surrounding the social networking company's IPO is untrue. Contrary to some reports, he said, he wasn't "aware of any dissent" among the underwriting firms regarding Facebook's IPO price of $38 a share. The discussion, called a strategy forum, is held weekly at the firm. The event, which Mr. Gorman attends periodically, features commentary from analysts and economists and is linked to on the company's internal website. Mr. Gorman told employees to "be proud of the job your colleagues did [in the Facebook IPO process] and don't judge us based upon what happened over a couple of days." Commenting on Facebook's stock performance, Mr. Gorman acknowledged the first day of trading "matters" but added investors should also judge an IPO based on its share price after 30 days, 90 days and 12 months. Morgan Stanley Chief Defends Facebook Handling [WSJ]