It seems like every day brings with it another apartment, boat, or car that the government is now auctioning off because its owner is either behind bars or about to head to prison any minute now. Today is no exception! The 112-foot yacht that belongs to accused fraudster "Sir" Allen Stanford is now up for sale. It's supposedly in excellent condition and features a new interior made of mahogany. Although if you do buy the yacht, keep in mind that you probably won't be able to use it to cruise to Antigua. That could get dangerous! [Luxist]
You missed your chance to swoop in like a vulture and take advantage of some of the poor souls who lost everything to Bernie Madoff's Ponzi scheme. Over the weekend, Palm Beach's Kofski Antiques held a two-day "Madoff Estate" sale and offered up the possessions of two Madoff investors who lost their fortunes as part of the alleged fraud. Included in the mix was a $3,000 mink coat and $3,850 crystal horse head. Then there there was this set of Eureka Grand Baroque Sterling flatware, which went for a mere $350. Don't be too disappointed if you missed out, though. Kofski's owner says he has another Madoff sale in the works, as well as a sale by a "top executive of Lehman Brothers." Excellent! We're totally buying one of Dick Fuld's old squash racquets.
Though apologist analyst were apparently out in force, and though the firm bragged about selling $1 million in Barack Obama knicknacks (whee!), there was no hiding the New York Times Company's financial distress at a bank's media conference in New York Tuesday. The most alarming report in the wake of the event: Word that the Times will try to renegotiate at least some of its more than $1 billion in debt and is preparing to do without much of a $400 million credit line expiring in May.
Layoffs and dividend cuts apparently aren't enough to get the New York Times Company out of the financial woods. The Times reports the company plans to mortgage or sell (and lease back) part of its shiny new Renzo Piano headquarters building, which cost half a billion dollars to build. It assigned Cushman & Wakefield the tricky task of finding someone willing to take a $225 million chance on a company whose debt is rated junk in a down market. The Times Company's timing is, once again, atrocious: The price of its old headquarters building tripled between when the company sold it in 2004 and three years later, when the newspaper finally moved into its new headquarters. That extra $350 million would sure come in handy now.