It was Merrill Lynch's turn in the spotlight Tuesday, as analysts revised their views on the firm's immediate prospects. Merrill's shares closed 1.1% down, after Fox-Pitt Kelton analyst David Drone said that the firm is likely to post a first quarter loss, and may end up writing down another $8bn in assets. There are, however, no liquidity concerns.
With JPMorgan Chase now owning 39.5% of Bear Stearns, there's very little chance of another successful bidder for the firm emerging. Having said this, we thought we take a quick look at the runners and riders in any case.
Now here's a first - JPMorgan Chase boss Jamie Dimon has actually been accused of being human!
The New York Post reports that Goldman Sachs is likely to axe up to 15% of its capital markets and investment banking staff, including support personnel. The newspaper, which quotes unnamed 'sources familiar with the matter', says that some staff were tapped on the shoulder as early as last Monday. Goldman currently employs around 32,000 people.
Just as billionaire investor Joe Lewis, the man believed to have lost around $1.2bn on his investment in Bear Stearns, is said to be turning up the heat on JPMorgan (and others are thought to be considering legal action), JPMorgan executives decided to increase their offer for Bear from $2-a-share to $10-a-share, valuing the firm at around $1.2bn (Bear's shares were trading at $170 each 12 months or so ago).
Lehman Brothers suspended two London-based equity derivatives traders on 28th February, after a routine internal review of some of their positions uncovered valuation issues.
Let's take a quick look at what made the news in the first-quarter. And let's hope things get better from here!
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2007 was a funny old year. The first six months saw investment banks pull in record revenues and reap record profits, but the back end of the year was an unmitigated disaster. Yet many financial markets professionals still managed to bag record (or at least decent) bonuses. But 2008 will be very different.
If your CEO has a film star, who would he be ? Here are a few suggestions:
Natalia Watkins, a 40-year-old Hong Kong-based executive for HSBC, knows about endurance.
The streets of Boston's financial district, usually bustling with activity, were nearly empty on Friday as staff worked from home during a virtual lockdown of the city while police hunted a suspect wanted in Monday's bombings.
Just when we thought we'd heard everything.