Tuesday, February 24, 2009

UBS Stuck Between Laws: History Bites Back

UBS Stuck Between Laws of 2 Nations? Issue concerns US court filing asking UBS to turn over identities of private accountholders. HEARD ON STREET: Secret History Comes Back to Bite UBS "Stress Test" for largest banks: not much different than treadmill your doctor might put you on. 3/2/09 UPDATE Supposedly "many" UBS sales people, after receiving cash portion of bonus reported to have walked off and do not intend to come back.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Khuzami SEC's New Top Cop

Khuzami Is SEC's New Top Cop -More

Policing TARP Proves Tricky

Short-staffed panel drawing heavily on Harvard law students as it churns out reports. Most of staffers are 20-something aides from Obama campaign, though an executive director and two banking lawyers were hired recently. Elizabeth Warren (pictures)chairwoman of Congressional Oversight Panel has rankled Republicans.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

NYC Plans to Retrain Laid-Off Wall Streeters

Unclear how much damage can be repaired with an investment by the City. NYT article.

Would you have signed off ?

Would your firm have signed off on these transactions? Former A.G. Edwards RR charged with recommending and effecting unsuitable transactions that resulted in high concentrations of Unit Investment Trusts (UITs) and barred from associating with any NYSE member for 10 years. Can you imagine any reason that AGED supervisory personnel signed-off on these transactions? Did they not notice an investment trend among RRs clients? For details, access Compliance Insights with SEC links.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Failed Banks Pose Test for Regulators

FDIC.transformed as debates in Congress and among economists persist.
Shrunk to 4800 employees from 15,000 during the last period of bank meltdowns in the '90s. Military-scale buildup as it undertakes one of the greatest fire sales of all time. Frantically calling in retirees and holding job fairs, looking to hire as many as 1,500. Budgeted to pay many millions for a small army of contractors to augment perm. staff. “We are trying to be ready for the inevitable.” Workers hourly rate $50-$250. FDIC contends cost is much less than it would have to pay to hire permanently. Blitz may offer lessons for Treasury Dept, struggling with an even more monumental challenge: how to help banks move toxic debt off balance sheets, hoping for risk taking stimulation of US economy.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

PIPE Frontrunning / SG SEC Fine / Failure to Supervise

Guillaume Pollet violated laws by shorting PIPE issuers prior to close of transactions in which he was contemplating investing Société Générale capital. SGAS failed to have a reasonable system to implement compliance and supervisory policies to prevent and detect Pollet's unlawful trading, and Control Room staff failed to adequately investigate suspicious trading by Pollet.

Layoffs Continuing-Lawyers et al

As many as 800 law firm workers lost jobs this week, according to The Recorder.
Law Firm summary.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Moore Wants Wall Street Deep Throats

Michael Moore wants your help to make a movie about the "biggest swindle in American history. Correspondence will be kept confidential." Bloomberg/Other Articles.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

New Bailout Plan for Crisis Created by Government

New details and reaction: creation of joint Treasury and Federal Reserve program (initial cost $250-$500 billion) to encourage investors to acquire mortgage assets from banks. FDIC might provide guarantees (“bad bank.”) Second component would expand (up to $1 trillion) Fed program to unfreeze commercial, student, auto and credit card markets. Third component would involve review of Bank capital levels. Capital would come out of remaining TARP funds. Initiative for homeowners' mortgage renegotiation next week.
WSJ Op/Ed: How Government Created the Financial Crisis - by John Taylor, Stanford economics professor.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Behind BofA/Merrill: Deal Gone Bad

Two disturbing, must-read stories about Merrill/Bank of America deal. One, in Sunday NY Times "Love Was Blind" and the other "In Merrill Deal, U.S. Played Hardball," in The Wall Street Journal. Stories could provide ammunition to BofA dissident shareholders.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Deutsche Bank Fallen Trader - Reeling Financials

Fall of Boaz Weinstein, once one of Wall Street's hottest traders, speaks volumes about why financials still reeling. Chess master, poker and blackjack devotee and Deutsche Bank trader, Weinstein made big bets using complex financial instruments...more at WSJ/Google News

Wall St. Pay Is Cyclical. Guess Where We Are Now. - Bonus system, now widely criticized, even in banking circles, for contributing to the economy’s woes. NYT/Version appeared Feb 5 in print (NY edition)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Watchdog Bonuses?

Included in Debate over Bonuses - is the question if regulators were also rewarded huge payouts, would they be more likely to stay one step ahead? DealBook column.

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