The Wall Street Journal reports that former Credit Suisse investment banker Hafiz Muhammad Zubiar Naseem has pleaded not guilty to allegations that he provided inside information to a banker in Pakistan, who subsequently made in excess of $7m by trading on it.
Financial News reports that activist investor Knight Vinke, which has its sights set on HSBC, has a $4m 'war chest' to spend on its fight to force through change at the bank. In its latest blast Friday, Knight Vinke suggested that HSBC should consider spinning off its Asian businesses in order to improve shareholder value.
In the meantime, Bloomberg reports that the bank has now come out and confirmed that it wants to obtain 60% of its pretax profits from Asia, Latin America and the Middle East. And Reuters reports that HSBC chairman Stephen Green has said that there will be no big investment banking acquisitions, or major deals in the US in the near future. He said that 'acquisitions that we will do will primarily be in emerging markets. If we see something that is manifestly good value and (which) fits with our strategy, and we're confident we can manage it, then we'll go for it'.
The Financial Times reports that City financier Guy Hands has come out and defended remarks he recently made at the Super Investor conference in Paris. According to the newspaper, Hands told the audience that investment bankers were a pack of 'whimpering dogs', who probably wouldn't get involved in funding 'mega buy-outs' for the next few years because of the problems they have experienced post the recent credit crunch. Hands is quoted saying that investment bankers liked 'to smell easy prey and push each other out of the way for food', but 'like any loyal dogs, when they get hit, they whimper'.
Distancing himself from the remarks, Hands, who once worked for Goldman and Nomura International, said that reports of what he said gave 'the impression that I was ungrateful for the support I have had from the banking community....I would like to assure you that nothing is further from the truth'.
Finally, The Wall Street Journal reports that JPMorgan Chase has appointed Barry Zubrow as its Chief Risk Officer. Zubrow, 54, was president of private investment management firm ITB LLC.