Tuesday and Wednesday were the last days Bear Stearns staff had to acquire 'some of the great Bear Stearns logo items that remain(ed) in the inventory'. Not all staff may have a job (or much in the way of net worth if they held too many shares in the company when it went fell to JPMorgan), but at least they could acquire a Bear 'hat, fleece, umbrella, duffel bag, teddy bear, etc' for their troubles.
The Independent reports that Citi is coming under pressure to bail out its Falcon Strategies hedge fund. The firm is said to be asking investors, who include Wachovia and Fifth Third Bancorp, to accept a $250m compensation package in return for dropping any legal claims against the company for losses sustained by investing in the fund.
One upshot of the credit crunch is that some of the smaller or troubled banks look vulnerable to takeover. Only last week Bank of America CEO Ken Lewis said that he thought it will be more difficult for stand alone investment banks (like Goldman, Lehman, Merrill and Morgan Stanley) to survive, and that they may be swallowed up by commercial banking rivals with bigger balance sheets, better capital-structures and deeper pockets. Well, it didn't take long for the rumour mill to kick into life.
Financial News reports that Morgan Stanley has cut up to 31 Managing Directors and Executive Directors in its latest cull of 1,500 staff globally. And Bloomberg says that, according to unnamed 'people familiar with the matter', the firm has also axed as many as 25 staff from its Japanese real estate securitization unit.
The job loss news just seems to be getting worse - but it might not be as bad as it seems. True, tens of thousands of bankers have already be laid-off around the world, and many firms are planning their next round of job cuts, but the smart money is now thinking that we are moving into the next stage of the downturn where, instead of firms throwing staff overboard, they merely battoning down the hatches.
For the 4th year, the brave and the bold have traded their suits and ties for shorts and gloves in the City’s leading charity boxing event, the Hedge Fund Fight Nite, which raises much needed funds for Operation Smile UK – a charity providing free reconstructive surgery to children and young adults all over the world that suffer from cleft lips, cleft palates and other facial deformities.
We found out a couple of months back that JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon had been asking fellow CEOs John Thain (Merrill Lynch) and John Mack (Morgan Stanley), among others, not to take avantage of the turmoil surrounding his acquisition of Bear Stearns by enticing away key staff. Well now, according to The Financial Times, Jamie has been personally writing to 'more than 30 clients, rivals and vendors', asking them to consider Bear staff if they have any appropriate open positions.
In 2007, Nomura's Knockout Challenge raised over £25,000 for the NSPCC. This year the event will be run from 12pm - 6pm on Saturday 14th June at The Honourable Artillery Company, Armoury House, City Road, London EC1Y 2BQ.
Not many people outside the industry know, but there are actually recruitment consultants who specialize in recruiting recruitment consultants for recruitment firms (you'd think that the recruitment firms themselves would be able to identify their own talent, but no). Anyway, one such rec-to-rec (as they are called) well and truly shot himself in the foot this week.
It's taken a little time (and a few casualties along the way), but staff are now getting the message about e-mails with inappropriate content - if you 'accidently' come across one in your inbox, don't forward it on. Otherwise you risk the sack.