Tragedy struck Citigroup Center in Chicago Friday, when a 59-year-old man forced a guard at gunpoint to take him to the 38th floor offices of law firm Wood, Phillips, Katz, Clark & Mortimer. Once inside, he chained up and sealed the exit so no-one could leave. Moments later three men had been shot dead, and a woman was injured. The three men all worked at the firm, two were lawyers. The shooter was then taken out by a SWAT team which attended the scene.
Well, either the market is really spooked, or traders have got little else to do except gossip. But unsubstantiated rumours swept trading rooms yesterday that Deutsche Bank had suffered trading losses in fixed income, which, so it is said, will adversely effect the bank's second quarter trading performance.
Reuters reports that shares in Barclays Bank finished at a record high Friday on rumours of that impending Bank of America bid - despite the news that Barclays outgoing chairman Matt Barrett sold 2.3 million shares Thursday (something that he would not have been allowed to do if a bid approach had been made).
Reuters reports that Credit Suisse's investment banking division which has for years, the news agency says, been 'a byword for flamboyant highly paid investment bankers', is tightening its belt and cutting costs. The investment banking unit still, it seems, has some way to go in paring back costs when compared to rivals UBS, Goldman and Lehman Brothers.
According to a recent survey undertaken by data provider EuroHedge, over 150 new hedge funds, attracting $13bn in assets, opened for business in the first 6 months of this year. That's up from 133 in the same period in 2004.
Morgan Stanley's Nick Nieland.
Reuters reports that the four biggest US investment banks (Bear Stearns, Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers and Morgan Stanley) are set to report an average 41% increase in profits in the final quarter. According to Wachovia Securities analyst Doug Sipkin, the last few weeks of 2006 are likely to be 'one of the strongest quarters on record'.
Goldman Sachs, of course.
Looks like Dresdner Kleinwort has started something of a trend. As we know, 5% of the firm's staff are said to be for the chop following a thorough performance-review / cost-cutting exercise. But Dresdner Kleinwort is not alone.
MarketWatch reports that shares in Barclays Bank were up Thursday, and again Friday morning, after a Merrill Lynch research note stated that Bank of America (BofA) was 'very interested' in buying the UK firm.
U.S. Federal authorities are using taped phone conversations to build criminal cases related to the multibillion-dollar trading loss at JPMorgan Chase, focusing on calls in which employees openly discussed how to value the troubled bets in a favorable way.
Facebook has been accused of taking the British taxpayer for a ride after experts suggested the company had depressed sales figures and that the website's average UK employee earned more last year than the whole social media network paid the exchequer.
Five years ago, this guy had hit bottom.