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  • Yet Another Bank Behaving Badly [View article]
    lavalyn, what makes you think Northern Trust will default on its TARP debt? This is one financial that is actually still doing relatively well and had a record year in 2008.

    What do people want? The economy to recover? Well, then maybe we should not ask every company out there to cancel every all their marketing events.
    Feb 25, 2009. 10:08 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • U.S. Debt Watch: Paths to Repudiation [View article]
    raytayzmd, unless you have reason to believe that the validity of a particular blogger's ideas are serially correlated (and either all right or all wrong), I think it is advised to analyse every post on a stand-alone basis.
    Feb 25, 2009. 09:58 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Yet Another Bank Behaving Badly [View article]
    Before I get thousands of "poor" ratings on my post above: I do understand the outrage over these lavish events. But not every single financial institution is on the edge of failure, and if one of them thinks that such an event is justified for whatever reason, why should they all be prohibited from doing so?

    These events are not always a total waste of money, but can bring in clients that actually make the company more money. This is even more the case in times when all their major competitors refrain from doing anything comparable for their clients (because of TARP infusions and the public outrages over such events).

    Furthermore, these events keep some of these resorts alive. If now everybody stops everything we'll have even more business failures on our hands.

    I just happen to think that as long as it is assured that TARP money will be paid back, we don't have to have a public outcry over every single event out there. Am I alone with that?
    Feb 25, 2009. 09:14 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Yet Another Bank Behaving Badly [View article]
    Why does anyone care what they do as long as the TARP money they didn't ask for will be paid back? Did they pay for these events with marked TARP dollars and then told the government that sorry, they won't be able to pay them back? Does anybody think Northern Trust might have to be nationalized and the TARP money will be forever lost? Sheesh.
    Feb 25, 2009. 09:03 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Nationalization: Why Continental Illinois Isn't Relevant [View article]
    Rhunzzz, it certainly wasn't meant as an ad hominem attack, but as an attack on his expertise. Felix critized somebody that has far more experience with the practice of nationalization and simply declared that guy's view as irrelevant, which is quite a tall order. I then did the same with Felix's views, simply because of Felix's inexperience with anything other than blogging about financial matter. That's all I did.

    I think I clarified in my next post that I do enjoy some of Felix's articles, and I do think he is an educated man. But there still is a big difference between book smarts and what works in reality.

    I apologize if my response came across as a personal attack.
    Feb 25, 2009. 08:38 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Nationalization: Why Continental Illinois Isn't Relevant [View article]
    To rephrase my statement: who'd you rather have an advisor: somebody who's been through nationalization and knows how it works (and advises against it), or some young guy with some book knowledge (who is for it)?

    Good old Felix, who does provide interesting articles at times, currently reminds me of the young guy in Braveheart who keeps telling the old, experienced king on how to do his job, because he has been "taught in the art and strategies of war" (but has actually not been in any one battle). Well, watchers of said movie know how well that ended for him.
    Feb 24, 2009. 12:50 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Nationalization: Why Continental Illinois Isn't Relevant [View article]
    Hmm, who are we to believe: a financial blogger who never managed a dime in his life (except maybe his 401(k)) and only read about Continental Illinois or a guy that was actually there?
    Feb 24, 2009. 12:24 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • An Interview with the Dean of Contrarian Investing [View article]
    For anybody interested in how fantastic a manager David Dreman is, look no further than to DCS and DHG, two closed-end funds managed by him and his staff. DCS lost about 90 % of its NAV last year and DHG probably around 65 %. Good job guys.
    Feb 24, 2009. 10:17 AM | 12 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Stress Testing Banks Now Is a Bad Idea [View article]
    It is good to know that there are still people out there who understand the complexities to seemingly straightforward concepts such as a bank "stress test". Very informative article.
    Feb 23, 2009. 06:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Bank Nationalization: It's No Panacea [View article]
    Very good article. I don't know why some people think wiping out more wealth is the answer to our problems. We need solutions that build confidence, not destroy it even more.
    Feb 23, 2009. 06:23 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Guaranteeing Bank Stock Prices Is Not the Answer [View article]
    Your argument that this plan creates perverse incentives might sound valid on paper, but in practice it doesn't work. Do you really believe any of the big banks would start reckless lending left and right because of a plan that can be revoked at anytime whenever the government pleases? Do you really believe they would stake the future of their bank on this?

    What we need is more confidence in the markets, plain and simple. Looks like every blogger is crapping over every single idea that doesn't involve nationalization. Why are people begging so much for more capital destruction? This won't fix anything. Lehman's bankruptcy last year must have made all these people's wildest dreams come true. Everybody got wiped out, all them greedy bankers. But why did create such incredible chaos then, if it is such a good idea?

    Do you guys not get it that when you start destroying capital in Bank A, you also destroy capital in Banks B,C,D, and E? The markets at this juncture can't think rationally; they'll instantly replicate whatever you do to one bank to every other bank and insurance company; regardless of them being healthy or not. Is this what you want? Gradually nationalize every single financial institution? Are you guys all short?

    Any plan that will work does not involve more value destruction, but a buildup of confidence. Now bloggers, up and at'em. Come up with some good, original ideas. Don't just tear down what other people come up with; you can do that with ANYTHING, but that ultimately proves nothing.
    Feb 21, 2009. 06:53 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Eight Reasons Bank of America Is Going to $20 [View article]
    Proximo, can you lay out BAC's lethal credit exposure for us so that we understand that nationalization is a given?
    Feb 20, 2009. 09:22 AM | 16 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Too Big to Bail: Lehman Brothers Is the Model for Fixing the Zombie Banks [View article]
    Seriously, where do you find clowns like Christopher Walen? Lehman the model for fixing functioning banks? Wiping out bond holders just because it worked so great the first time? Who's paying for these articles?
    Feb 19, 2009. 01:45 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How GE Compares to Other Banks [View article]

    let me just say that this is a risky bet that I would be very uncomfortable with. Even in a bear market GE can easily rally 50-60 % before resuming its downtrend again. The sudden spike in volatility plus the fact that your naked calls would then be at-the-money can wipe you out. Good luck.
    Feb 18, 2009. 09:18 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • How GE Compares to Other Banks [View article]
    ge_shareholder, I'm sure User 358157 was actually referring to Felix Salmon's article and cited your post, supporting your opinion.
    Feb 17, 2009. 12:19 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment