CIBC, CSFB, Citigroup, Enron

CIBC World Markets has agreed to pay $500,000 to settle allegations that it violated US securities laws by undertaking work for the state of California less than 2 years after contributing to then-Governor Gray Davis's re-election campaign. The Canadian bank will pay up without admitting or denying wrongdoing.

Credit Suisse has said that it stands to save around $760m a year by merging CSFB with the rest of its banking business units, including asset management and private banking. The savings will come from combining computer networks, trading platforms and in general purchasing. No doubt there will also be some headcount savings in there somewhere!

Citigroup has defeated a investor's attempt to recover $900m in damages, after he claimed that he received bias/dishonest investment advice from former company research analyst Jack Grubman. A NASD panel ruled against billionaire investor Donald Sturm who, so Citigroup claimed, was a sophisticated investor who had access to a number of other financial advisers. 

The world's largest financial services business has also confirmed that it plans to more than half its stake in Nikko Cordial Corp. Citigroup will make a hefty profit on the share sale, and will still retain around 4.95% in the Japanese firm.

Finally, former Enron CEO Ken Lay made a rare public appearance this week. Talking before the Houston Forum, Lay protested his innocence, and confirmed that he planned to testify at his trial. Lay is said to have laid the blame for Enron's demise at the feet of former Enron CFO Andrew Fastow.

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