Happy Birthday

cityfile · 10/27/09 06:52AM

Conservative mouthpiece Matt Drudge turns 43 today. Writer Fran Lebowitz is 59. John Cleese is turning 70. Kelly Osbourne is turning 25. Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver is turning 42. Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon is 51. Financier J. Christopher Flowers is 52. Director Ivan Reitman is turning 63. Oscar-winning Italian actor Roberto Benigni turns 57. Novelist Zadie Smith is 34. And Marla Maples, the second wife of Donald Trump and the mother of one of his five kids, is 46 today.

Wall Street: Wednesday Morning

cityfile · 05/13/09 05:41AM

• Disappointing retail sales figures and a surprising rise in the number of foreclosures are sending stocks lower this morning. [CNN, WSJ]
• The Obama administration is looking into ways to change the way people across the financial services industry are compensated and that includes companies that didn't even receive federal bailout money. [WSJ, NYT]
• Ed Liddy may be jobless soon: Trustees overseeing taxpayers' stake in AIG are seeking a CEO to replace Liddy as well as new board members. [WSJ]
• Speaking of AIG, were officials like Tim Geithner aware of the bonus situation at the company months before the news broke? It looks that way. [WaPo]

Harkness Mansion: Now Just $49.95 Million

cityfile · 02/26/09 08:01AM

• Financier J. Christopher Flowers is putting his Upper East Side townhouse—known as the Harkness Mansion—on the market. It's "quietly being offered" for $49.95 million, which is a few million bucks less than what Flowers paid for the 50-foot-wide townhouse when he bought it from Jacqui Safra and Jean Doumanian in 2006. [NYO]
• Former Revlon CEO Jack Stahl has paid $8 million for a 21st-floor apartment at 255 East 74th Street. [Cityfile]
• Equinox founder Danny Errico and his wife Vera have sold their six bedroom, oceanfront mansion at 71 Shipwreck Drive in Amagansett for $11.895 million. [NYP]
• Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson may be trying to back out of a deal to buy a three-bedroom penthouse at 200 East 66th Street. [NYP]

Would a $50 Million Townhouse Make You Happy?

cityfile · 01/13/09 04:45PM

Few real estate brokers did better during the boom times than Paula Del Nunzio, the Brown Harris Stevens mega-agent who unloaded eight-figure townhouses to the likes of hedge funders Phil Falcone, Jim Chanos, and John Paulson and our fave Tblisi-born cabdriver-turned-real estate baron, Tamir Sapir. With New York's real estate market headed off a cliff, it's unlikely that Del Nunzio's record-setting deal—the sale of the Harkness Mansion to financier J. Christopher Flowers in 2006 for $53 million—will be surpassed any time soon. But is Flowers, who reportedly enjoys plays chess against himself, really happier than the rest of us because he gets to set up his chess board in a small corner of a magnificent 22,000-square-foot limestone mansion overlooking Central Park?

Happy Birthday

cityfile · 10/27/08 06:32AM

Writer and humorist Fran Lebowitz turns 58 today. Internet muckraker Matt Drudge is 42. Financier J. Christopher Flowers turns 51. Musician Scott Weiland is 41. Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon is 50. Kelly Osbourne is 24. Director Ivan Reitman in 62. Actor John Cleese is celebrating his 69th. British author Zadie Smith is 33. And Donald Trump's second wife, Marla Maples, turns 45 today.

Street Talk: Wachovia Settlement?

cityfile · 10/06/08 05:18AM

♦ The legal battle between Citigroup and Wells Fargo raged over the weekend as both banks sought the upper hand in their bid for Wachovia. A Fed-led settlement which would divide Wachovia's assets may put an end to the dispute. [NYT, WSJ]
♦ Bank of America has agreed to settle government claims related to Countrywide Financial. The total price tag could exceed $8.6 billion. [WSJ]
Dick Fuld will make his first appearance in weeks when he speaks before a House committee today. [NYP]
♦ Eli Lilly has agreed to acquire ImClone Systems for $6.5 billion. [Reuters]

Street Talk: The Battle Over the Bailout

cityfile · 09/25/08 05:26AM

♦ President Bush urged Americans to support the $700 billion bailout during his televised address last night, the first time he's ever devoted a primetime speech to the economy. Meanwhile, thousands of politicians continue to clash over the specifics. [NYT]
♦ Warren Buffet was drinking a cherry coke and eating mixed nuts last Tuesday when he got a call about investing in Goldman Sachs. He hammered out the $5 billion deal in about 15 minutes and then moved on to Cheetos and "licorice pastel candies." [WSJ]
♦ WaMu may not have much time left. [Bloomberg]
♦ Lehman Brothers chief Dick Fuld reached out to GE CEO Jeff Immelt before the firm filed for bankruptcy. [NYP]

The $45 Million Club

cityfile · 08/18/08 07:30AM

The Post has spotted a new real estate trend: apparently quite a few people have paid more than $45 million for apartments and townhouses recently. This "new stratosphere" includes Harry Macklowe ($60mm), J. Christopher Flowers ($53mm), Phil Falcone ($49mm), Dan Loeb ($45.8mm), Jon Tisch ($48mm) and Len Blavatnik, who paid $50 million to acquire a 15,000-square-foot townhouse from "Seagram's president Edgar Bronfman Jr." Bronfman hasn't served as the president of Seagram for about a decade now. But let this slip-up serve as a lesson to us all! If you take over your father's immensely valuable liquor empire and then sell off the pieces to fund your misguided investments in the music and film industries—and lose billions of your family's money in the process—you may be forced to downsize.

J. Christopher Flowers

cityfile · 01/25/08 11:29PM

J. Christopher Flowers is the billionaire founder of J.C. Flowers & Co., a private equity firm that focuses on the financial services sector.