Nemazee's Scheme Now in the Nine Figures

cityfile · 09/21/09 02:40PM

Hassan Nemazee, the banker and Democratic mega-fundraiser who was indicted last month for allegedly using forged documents to obtain a $74 million loan from Citibank—and who is currently under house arrest at his Park Avenue apartment—is facing new charges. He's been indicted for bank fraud and "aggravated identity theft" as part of what prosecutors describe as a $292 million Ponzi scheme that involves Bank of America and HSBC, too. Also, in case you've been mispronouncing his name all this time, the AP points out it's hah-SAHN' nah-MAH'-zee. Please make a note of it. [AP, Reuters]

Obama and Wall Street Make Nice

cityfile · 03/25/09 04:55AM

• Congress's efforts to recoup bonuses at AIG appear to have cooled over the past few days. And President Obama will make an effort to repair relations with Wall Street when he sits down with a dozen bank CEOs on Friday. [WSJ]
• More on Tim Geithner's proposal yesterday that the government be given the authority to take control of troubled financial institutions. [NYT]
• HSBC is planning to lay off 1,200 people in the UK. [DB]
• Hedge funders may see pay drop by as much as 25 percent this year. [BN]
• A Steve Rattner-less Quadrangle Group has decided to temporarily suspend efforts to raise a third private equity fund. [peHUB]
• More big names have decided to leave Merrill Lynch. [FT, WSJ]
• AIG says it sold two of its jets and has cancelled delivery of two more. [ABC]
• An employee with AIG shares his resignation letter: He says he's been "betrayed by AIG" and "unfairly persecuted by elected officials." [NYT]

Another $30 Billion for AIG

cityfile · 03/02/09 06:19AM

• The government is pumping another $30 billion into AIG, the insurance giant deemed "too big to fail." The company also reported a fourth-quarter loss of $61 billion, the largest quarterly loss in history. [NYT, BN, WSJ]
• Stocks moved lower on Monday morning following the AIG news. [BN]
• HSBC is cutting 6,100 jobs and raising $18 billion in capital. [Reuters, DB]
• Hedge funds are bracing for another wave of withdrawals. [WSJ]
• The third bailout of Citigroup last week? It may not be the last. [NYT]
• Investment banks pulled in $53 billion in fees in 2008, 39 percent less than the record $87 billion of a year earlier. JPMorgan took the biggest share. [BN]
• Consumer spending rose in January for the first time in seven months as shoppers took advantage of post-holiday discounts. [BN]

Rapidly Shrinking Citi

cityfile · 01/14/09 06:57AM

• Citigroup announced yesterday that it would sell a majority stake in Smith Barney to Morgan Stanley, but more change is on the way: The bank is expected to dump two consumer finance units as well as its "private-label" credit card business, which means now your Save the Whales Mastercard is in jeopardy, too. [WSJ, NYT]
• Deutsche Bank reported a loss of $6.3 billion in the fourth quarter. [BN]
• HSBC may need $30 billion to stay afloat. [DB]
• Nortel Networks has filed for bankruptcy protection. [BN]
• Just in case it wasn't eminently clear by all the bad news above, today is expected to be a pretty bad day in the markets. [WSJ]
• Marcus Schrenker was caught last night, but there's a new financial exec to add to the fugitive list: Ex-UBS exec Raoul Weil is now a wanted man. [NYT]
• Bernie Madoff will be in court in person later today when a judge considers an appear from prosecutors who want to imprison Madoff pending trial. [BN]
• Robert Jaffe, the Madoff middleman who failed to show up to meet with regulators yesterday, says he missed the meeting because he's sick. [WSJ]
• More on Tim Geithner's little tax problem. [NYT]

Goldman's Losses, Paulson's Winnings, and More Layoffs

cityfile · 12/02/08 06:07AM

♦ Stocks are poised to move higher today after yesterday's bloodbath. [CNN]
♦ Goldman Sachs may report a loss of as much as $5 billion this quarter, the firm's first quarterly loss since it went public in 1999. [WSJ]
♦ Credit Suisse and HSBC have announced another round of job cuts. [Reuters]
♦ Highbridge Capital, founded by Glenn Dubin and Henry Swieca and owned by JPMorgan, is the latest hedge to suffer a fall. More than a third of its investors are looking to withdraw cash and the flagship fund is down 25%. [WSJ]
♦ One hedge funder doing fine: John Paulson. His firm has already cleared profits of more than $1 billion this year betting that the housing market would crumble and banks would fail. [Bloomberg]
♦ What does the head of a new Congressional panel set up to monitor the bailout have to say about Hank Paulson's strategy? That it does appear Paulson has a strategy. [NYT]

An Acquisition for Citigroup, More Money for AIG

cityfile · 11/10/08 06:15AM

♦ Citigroup is in talks to buy a regional bank, says the WSJ. Which bank it is they're planning to acquire isn't clear. [WSJ]
♦ The bailout of AIG that was originally going to cost $85 billion and was later revised to $123 billion? Yea, well, now it's $150 billion. [WSJ, Bloomberg]
♦ October was another down month for hedge funds: Since the beginning of September, the average fund has shed 10 percent. [NYP, Bloomberg]
♦ The man who may go down as the hedge fund industry's big winner in 2009: Jim Chanos, whose Ursus fund is up 50 percent so far this year. [NYP]
♦ Asian stocks rallied on Monday after China announced a $586 billion bailout package. [Bloomberg]

HSBC Buys All Of New York's Ads: Good Timing Or Bad?

Hamilton Nolan · 10/20/08 08:51AM

You may have noticed that a large percentage of flat surfaces in America are currently occupied by those vaguely enraging tri-panel HSBC ads, where identical images are given different captions to prove that—I suppose—HSBC does not believe in a Kantian sense of moral absolutism. "A child: Love. Responsibility. Welfare Fraud." Now the bank is sponsoring this week's entire issue of New York magazine, meaning you'll have more than a dozen new chances to soak in HSBC's triumvirates of relativism. But considering the timing, it's worthwhile to ask: "Banks sponsoring entire issues: Smart. The Future. Monumental Fuckup?" This issue has been "in the works for several months," meaning that the bank sure as hell didn't know it would be running in the midst of The Great Depression Pt. 2. HSBC says it's all very "timely and appropriate." Mm hmm. Regardless of the intent, the real question is, is this sort of thing wise? With a bad economic outlook for advertising in general, publications themselves certainly hope so. Banks are mostly wandering trying every possible ad strategy right now—from comedy to doomsaying—in search of something that's effective. They don't really know what to do. Shhh! But! The one thing we know is that the proliferation of media makes it increasingly hard for advertisers to get their messages out. So buying all the ad space in a magazine or on a website is probably just going to gain favor as a tactic. They just need to make sure they're not buying it in something that's about to fold. That would be embarrassing. [NYT]

Street Talk: Bailout Talks Continue

cityfile · 09/26/08 05:30AM

♦ All eyes are on Washington, of course, as lawmakers reconvene to try and hammer out a bailout. [Politico, NYT]
♦ J.P. Morgan Chase has agreed to pay $1.9 billion to the government for WaMu's banking operations and will take over the company's portfolio of loans. WaMu depositors will still have access to their cash; holders of WaMu equity and debt won't be as lucky. [WSJ, DB]

Street Talk

cityfile · 09/10/08 05:12AM
  • A battered Lehman Brothers plans to spin off the majority of its real estate investments into a new company and sell more than half its interest in its investment management division. The bank also predicted a third-quarter loss of $3.9 billion. [WSJ, Dealbook]

Google's secret plan to rule world: more satellites!

Alaska Miller · 09/09/08 05:00PM

Not happy with just sharing a satellite, Google wants to launch an entire constellation. O3b, or "Other 3 Billion," is a fund led by Google, Liberty Global, and an investment arm of HSBC. It aims to raise money — $60 million thus far — to establish a 16-satellite network to provide high speed Internet access for people in areas like the Middle East and central Africa. What we want to know: Will Larry and Sergey bring wives Lucy Southworth and Anne Wojcicki to each and every launch?

Street Talk

cityfile · 09/03/08 05:16AM
  • Dwight Anderson's Ospraie Management is shutting down its flagship fund after a 27 percent loss in August in the commodities market. [WSJ]

Street Talk

cityfile · 08/04/08 05:02AM
  • Time Warner is getting ready to sell off its AOL dial-up business and may announce a deal this week. [WSJ]