Thursday, December 18, 2008

Read Up!

Some good stories around today:

CSFB designed an interesting solution to the problem of executive compensation in tough times on Wall Street: they took their "troubled assets" and put them into a fund. Senior employees (directors and managing directors) will be given stakes in the fund as part of their compensation! Thus, if the assets are really worth what people say they are, the execs will make out nicely If they're full of it, they'll eat their worthless paper. I especially like the comment on Barry's blog in the link above suggesting that Congress be compensated the same way: with the gains from the "investments" of the TARP loans!

Paul Kedrosky has a link to some must read stuff on Bernie Madoff. If you read the warning letter that Harry Markopolos sent to the SEC years ago it probably won't make you think any higher of the SEC.

Speaking of the SEC, NakedShorts weighs in on Obama's new SEC head: Mary Schapiro:

Schapiro has troubled these pixels but once, when we reported that in 2003, during a period when she was opining vociferously on hedge fund-related broker-dealer disclosures and the adequacy thereof, her valiant sleuths swept through the offices of Bayou Securities LLC in Scamford, Conn.

There, they found $8500 worth of allowing “two individuals to execute transactions...without first obtaining registration as equity traders…” and failing “to update written supervisory procedures reasonably designed to achieve compliance with said regulations…” The missing however many hundreds of millions it was by then quite escaped their attention as, boxes all checked and wrist-taps to come, the sleuths boarded the train back to Boston.

For the uninitiated, Bayou was the original hedge fund ponzi scheme - back before Madoff was discovered. Schapiro apparently had her chance to take a look at their books, but came back with doody.

Clusterstock notes the despicable manipulation of the oil market by short sellers. And, in case you're retarded, they are being sarcastic.

I liked the point of this Bloomberg article, which points out that the Fed is making hundreds of billions of dollars of loans based on the AAA ratings of securities which were rated by the same people who've already proven their ratings cannot be relied on.

Finally, via CNNsi HotClicks, I had no idea there was such a thing as trick bowling:


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