Citigroup Leads Wall Street Banks In Moody’s Downgrade Dismissal (Bloomberg)
Moody’s two-grade cut of Citigroup’s ratings was unwarranted, arbitrary and failed to recognize the lender’s financial strength, the New York-based bank said in a statement. Investors shouldn’t rely on “opaque” credit ratings, it said. “Moody’s approach is backward-looking and fails to recognize Citi’s transformation over the past several years,” said the bank. “Citi believes that investors and clients have become much more sophisticated in their credit analysis over the past few years, and that few rely on ratings alone -- particularly from a single agency -- to make their credit decisions.”
Moody's Downgrade of Banks ‘Absurd,’ Says Dick Bove (CNBC)
“This is one of the most absurd things that Moody’s has ever done perhaps in the history of the company,” said Dick Bove, Vice President of Equity Research in the Financial Sector at Connecticut-based Rochdale Securities.
JPMorgan Trading Loss Drove Three-Level Standalone Cut (Bloomberg)
“It illustrates the challenges of monitoring and managing risk in a complex global organization and highlights the opacity of such risks,” Moody’s said.
Ratings Downgrade Cuts Deeply At Morgan Stanley (NYT)
In an e-mail sent to staff members after the downgrade was announced, Mr. Gorman tried to reassure employees about the bank’s future. “While we do not believe that this outcome reflects all of the transformative changes we have made to the firm, there is an acknowledgment in Moody’s decision today that real progress has been made at Morgan Stanley, in what is an extremely difficult environment for our industry,” he wrote.
Hedge Funds Mask Identities (WSJ)
It is the latest in-vogue accessory among hedge-fund managers: a "masked fund." Bridgewater Associates has "ZQPGGAV00000," John Paulson has "Paulson Fund 1" while Cliff Asness's AQR Capital Management prefers "805-1355888867." The cryptic monikers, more product barcodes than real handles, enable the hedge-fund managers to shield the identities of their funds from the prying eyes of regulators and outsiders in forms filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission...The practice, allowed under a new SEC instruction that lets firms preserve the anonymity of their clients in certain cases, has irked some investors and their advisers. They argue that hiding funds' identities in regulatory filings undermines Washington's efforts to make the reticent world of hedge funds more transparent and hinders investors' efforts to keep tabs on the firms that manage their assets.
Emails Ties Goldman Manager, Rajaratnam (WSJ)
A current Goldman managing director exchanged emails with Galleon founder Raj Rajaratnam ahead of a daily "morning meeting" at Galleon, according to previously undisclosed emails and wiretapped phone call transcripts reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. In the emails, the Goldman manager offered what he called "tiddie biddies" about some top technology firms, including Apple and Intel Corp...In the emails, Mr. Loeb often addressed Mr. Rajaratnam with nicknames like "Dr RR" and "big daddie" and signed off his emails with CBF, which colleagues have said stands for "chunky but funky."
Anderson Cooper Berates Photo-Snapping Airplane Passenger (LAT)
"Normally I would just be like, 'We're not going to win this one,' but I've lately become emboldened," Cooper said in an interview. "I grabbed the guy on the shoulder and I said something to the effect of, 'Bitch, what ... are you doing?'"
Pimco’s Gross Warns Of Risk Assets (Bloomberg)
Gross, who manages $261 billion for the Pimco Total Return Fund (PTTRX), said in a Twitter post that risk markets are vulnerable as the “monetary bag of tricks empties.”
Spanish Plan Is Flawed, Says IMF (WSJ)
The euro zone needs to quickly set up a mechanism that allows it to directly recapitalize weak banks, "in order to break the negative feedback loop that we have between banks and sovereigns," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said after a meeting with the bloc's finance ministers in Luxembourg. Ms. Lagarde also called for "creative and inventive" measures from the European Central Bank, suggesting that the bank could restart its bond-buying program to keep struggling countries' funding costs in check or further cut already-low interest rates.
Einhorn Enters $1 Million Buy-In Poker Tournament For Charity (Bloomberg)
Einhorn, who finished 18th in the World Series of Poker’s main event in 2006, is among at least 42 entrants for the July 1-3 charity event in Las Vegas, known as the Big One for One Drop.
Angry Moms Take On Nutella (Bloomberg)
Laura Rude-Barbato, a coffee shop owner in Imperial Beach, California, used to feed her children Nutella several times a week. It was easy to identify with the advertising that depicted a frenzied mom serving up the chocolate-hazelnut spread with the tagline “breakfast never tasted this good,” said Rude-Barbato. Then she noticed the 10.5 grams of sugar per tablespoon. “I had no idea,” she says [because she for some reason didn't realize that a chocolate spread might be filled with sugar]. “I might as well have been giving my kids a brownie for breakfast.” Rude-Barbato kicked the Nutella habit, then joined a class action lawsuit in a federal court in California that claimed Ferrero SpA’s U.S. unit misled consumers via labeling and marketing into thinking Nutella was healthy.