Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Hedge funds etc.

thought the Geithner Plan to be worth a 500-point bounce in the market yesterdays. the taxpayer? Well, here's another view.

Monday, March 23, 2009


From my friend John Dizard's FT col:

"In fact, the serious errors in management and corporate governance at AIGFP cannot be traced to incentives created by bonuses paid out on short term profits. The mess was created by central banks’ artificially depressing market volatility, AIGFP’s adopting risk management models that projected those false signals into an indefinite future, dependence on corrupted ratings agencies, and the inappropriate use of mark to market accounting."

Friday, March 20, 2009

west side story

You will be amused if you compare the reviews by Brantley in the Times and Teachout in the Wall Street Journal. Both lament a departure from the Robbins etc original that leads to a slightly different emotional axis, if you will. Brantley says that the original's tough, vicious street kids have been replaced by wide-eyed innocents. Teachout says that the original's wide-eyed innocents have been replaced by tough, vicious street kids. Quo vadimus?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

And this


William Cohan, House of Cards

Here is my take on Cohan's very good book on Bear, Stearns.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


This makes good sense.

The "Three Guys" stimulus plan

From today's New York Observer, read it here.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

In search of Lost Time

Here is a good selection of Midas Watch cols written during the buildup to crisis. Reading them now, I'm quite pleased.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

On - Madoff, Markopolos, the media

read it here

Bloomberg today reports

that Legg Mason, the big money manager, has dumped its toxic Structured Investment Vehicles (SIVs) at 25 cents on the dollar. That's about what Merrill Lynch got for its junk last all from Lone Star. So maybe this can be a starting-point basis on which to price bad assets in general.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

On the other hand

once the Right trots out this ignoramus and former cokehead, confidence is restored.

Obama is starting to worry me

During his campaign, he radiated common sense and realism. Lately, however, it's the latter I'm concerned about. The basis for any progressive tax system must be to tax AS rich what IS rich. A family income of $250,000 doesn't qualify, no matter in how a percentile it places one in. Wealth needs to be taken into account. Obama's on the right track when it comes to shaving the tax efficacy of certain kinds of deduction. But why not a progressive capital gains tax?

Hold & Suffer

In October, my nerves couldn't take it any more, and I sold out the stocks that comprised the modest mite that I had hoped would see me to my grave. As it is, measured by projections of resources versus overhead, I have a life expectancy of 5-6 years before I either reach for the hemlock or take up residence under a viaduct somewhere.
This morning, on NPR, I heard the great David Swensen of Yale counsel against selling stocks. That may be good advice if your own good companies for pennies and are looking at a fat tax bite even at these levels, but the way I see t, if and when it seems reasonable to go back into equities, I will have more money with which to start.

In today's Observer

go here

In today's Observer

go here

I was out of the country

last week, which accounts for my silence. You can find not only me but all sorts of other good stuff by going here.