Citigroup, Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Wachovia

The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), and the seat members who are unhappy about the terms of the proposed merger with electronic trading exchange Archipelago, have agreed to use Citigroup to provide a second opinion on the deal. Citigroup will need to work fast, however, as the firm will have to get its opinion out to NYSE's 1,366 members by November 29th. A vote on the merger is scheduled for 6th December.

Goldman Sachs is said to have made a cool $80m in less than 24 hours last week, after buying and then on-selling DaimlerChrysler's 12.4% stake in Mitsubishi Motors.

Sad to report, too, the death of former Goldman head of investment management, John McNulty. McNulty, 52, retired from the firm in 2001. He is survived by a wife (also a former Goldman MD) and three children.

A US County Circuit Judge refused last week to rule on whether Morgan Stanley and several of its executives should be held in criminal contempt for allegedly withholding e-mail evidence in the recent $1.58bn trial spat with billionaire financier Ron Perelman. The judge said that any ruling might be prejudicial to Morgan Stanley's appeal.

Finally, US regulator the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is said to be investigating if the firing of Wachovia fixed-income analyst Arturo Cifuentes in April was in retaliation for the analyst's alleged refusal to change certain research reports at the behest of investment bankers. The analyst filed an unfair termination suit with the US labour Department earlier this year.

A spokesperson for Wachovia said that 'we believe any claims alleging that our fixed-income research analysts are subject to improper influence are meritless'.

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