AIG questions Fed employee's testimony in BofA case | Many claims against banks in Libor suits are ousted by U.S. judge | Financial world watches Rep. Hensarling's agenda
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April 1, 2013
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Judge refuses to dismiss cases against former Freddie Mac execs
U.S. District Judge Richard Sullivan sided with the Securities and Exchange Commission in refusing to dismiss most charges against former Freddie Mac executives. The court rejected claims by Richard Syron, former CEO at Freddie Mac, and Patricia Cook, former chief business officer, that the availability of quantitative data should counteract any statements they may have made that misrepresented exposure to subprime mortgage loans. The court also permitted the case against another executive, Donald Bisenius, to continue. Reuters (3/29)
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Industry Update
AIG questions Fed employee's testimony in BofA case
American International Group says New York Federal Reserve employee James Mahoney reversed his testimony on who holds the rights to take legal action against Bank of America over mortgage bonds underwritten by entities now owned by the bank and purchased by AIG. AIG disputes the bank's assertion that when AIG was rescued by the New York Fed, it also ceded all of its rights to legal action. The Wall Street Journal (3/29)
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Many claims against banks in Libor suits are ousted by U.S. judge
A federal court judge threw out many of the claims brought against a group of banks, ruling that their alleged manipulation of the London Interbank Offered Rate did not violate antitrust laws. If the decision withstands appeals, it would eliminate the possibility of triple damages, greatly reducing banks' financial exposure. The judge did permit other aspects of the case, including possible breaches of commodities laws, to move forward. The Washington Post/The Associated Press (3/29), The Wall Street Journal (3/29)
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Financial world watches Rep. Hensarling's agenda
Many in the financial industry are paying close attention to statements made by Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, about the relationship between the government and the private sector. "A great case can be made that we need greater capital and liquidity standards," Hensarling said recently. "Certainly, we have to do a better job ring-fencing, fire-walling -- whatever metaphor you want to use -- between an insured depository institution and a noninsured investment bank." The Wall Street Journal (3/29)
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FBI arrests SAC portfolio manager on insider-trading charges
Longtime SAC Capital Advisors portfolio manager Michael Steinberg was arrested by the FBI on insider-trading charges related to Dell and Nvidia shares. Much of the case against him is based on the testimony of Jon Horvath, a former co-worker at SAC Capital, who admitted that he engaged in insider trading. Reuters (3/31), The New York Times (tiered subscription model)/DealBook blog (3/29)
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New York Focus
N.J. business subsidies have soared since Christie took office
New Jersey's subsidies and tax breaks for businesses averaged $10.4 million a month from 2000 to 2010, but have increased to $53 million a month since Gov. Chris Christie took office, according to a study by New Jersey Policy Perspective. The amount of the incentives given to individual businesses seems "outsized" when compared with what other states offer, said Gordon MacInnes, the group's president. The Wall Street Journal (3/31)
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Advertising to back N.Y. campaign-finance reform effort
Supporters of reform for New York's campaign-finance laws plan to spend more than $800,000 on advertising seeking the public's backing for the effort. Organizing for Action, which grew out of President Barack Obama's 2012 campaign, is among the organizations pressing for new laws on political financing. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (3/31)
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Career Development
Advice from 5 leaders on not being a control freak
Micromanaging every project is obviously a negative, but there are many ways to change your approach, writes Heather R. Huhman, who asks five leaders to offer advice. "By nitpicking every step of a project, you'll not only drive your employees a bit crazy, but you'll cause yourself more stress in the process," she writes. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Leadership (3/27)
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On The Economy
Analysis: Investors strive to anticipate Fed's next move
The Federal Reserve's efforts to support the U.S. economy have created strong prices in equities and have prompted investors to seek yield in riskier debt, analysts say. Eventually, investors may be forced to anticipate changes in Fed policy and adjust accordingly. The Wall Street Journal (3/31)
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Financial Products
Eaton Vance asks SEC to approve non-transparent ETFs
Eaton Vance, a longtime sponsor of closed-end mutual funds, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission for authorization to market a new kind of exchange-traded fund, a non-transparent ETF that would be exempt from the requirement to disclose the investments in its portfolio daily. The firm joins BlackRock and Precidian Investments in seeking exemptions from the customary ETF requirement of daily portfolio disclosure. Bloomberg (3/28), IndexUniverse.com (3/28), American City Business Journals/Boston (3/28)
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SmartQuote
Dreams have only one owner at a time. That's why dreamers are lonely."
-- Erma Bombeck,
American humorist
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