Greek Exit Plan, Goldman’s Protest-Free Shareholder Meeting, NYSE & Nasdaq Face Off For Facebook: Wall Street News 5/24/2012
by Wall Street Job Report on May 24, 2012
Mark Zuckerberg’s Unpleasant New Life [Reuters] Every time there’s a high-profile IPO, a few clever journalists will wheel out their contrarian take. LinkedIn had a huge pop? Then it’s a failed IPO, and Morgan Stanley “screwed the company and its shareholders to the tune of an astounding $175 million”. Facebook fell off a cliff? Then it’s a great success for the company, because it means it got the best price it possibly could. Matt Yglesias has a typical such post up, saying that “Mark Zuckerberg Made out Nicely in the Facebook IPO”. He explains that “for people making the initial sales an anti-pop is ideal. It means no money was left on the table. Or, rather, it means that negative money was left on the table”.
Eurozone Governments Ponder Greek Exit Contingency [Reuters] At least half of euro zone governments as well as banks and large companies are making contingency plans in case Greece decides to leave the single currency area, even though the preferred option is still for Athens to keep the euro. Italy’s Deputy Economy Minister Vittorio Grilli said his country was ready for such a possibility, if Greek voters on June 17 give power to parties that reject reforms agreed with the EU and IMF in exchange for emergency loans.
Citigroup Names Santomero Chairman Of Citibank Subsidiary [Bloomberg] Citigroup Inc. (C), the third-biggest U.S. lender, named Anthony Santomero chairman of the board that oversees Citibank NA, the lender’s main banking subsidiary that holds almost 70 percent of its $1.94 trillion of assets. “As a former president of the Philadelphia Federal Reserve, Dr. Santomero has a deep understanding of the regulatory system governing financial institutions, making him an excellent chairman for the Citibank NA board,” Citigroup Chairman Michael O’Neill said yesterday in an e-mail.
Spain to Recapitalize Bankia in Latest Bailout [TWSJ] The Spanish government will provide about €9 billion ($11.4 billion) to cover Bankia SA’s provisioning needs, Finance Minister Luis de Guindos said Wednesday, in the latest sign that Spain’s economic deterioration is forcing authorities to inject more public funds to bail out ailing banks. Since Bankia won’t be able to meet provisioning and capital needs, Spain’s Fund for Orderly Bank Restructuring will be ready to inject capital into Bankia’s unlisted parent company, Banco Financiero & de Ahorros SA, which holds the company’s most toxic real-estate assets, Mr. de Guindos told legislators in Parliament.
Mutual Funds Promised Haven From Speedsters [TWSJ] A small group of market wonks is planning a trading platform targeting a category of investors they say has been overlooked by traditional stock exchanges: mutual-fund managers. Led by Bradley Katsuyama, a former head of electronic trading at the Royal Bank of Canada, the group says it is seeking to protect fund managers by excluding so-called high-frequency trading firms, which use powerful computers to jump in and out of markets at lightning speeds.
Euro Plunge On the Horizon, Analyst Says [TWSJ] The euro looks like it has found a temporary floor just above $1.25. At least one firm doesn’t think its going to last. The common currency has been hit hard over the last few weeks, quickly tumbling from $1.30 to around $1.25 as Europe’s sovereign-debt crisis has picked up steam. Investors are fixated on contingency plans for a potential Greek exit from the euro zone, which has led to weakness in the euro.
Goldman Breezes Through Protest-Free Meeting [TWSJ] For a bank that has endured a tumultuous year marked by a high-profile resignation in the pages of the New York Times and other public-relations fiascoes, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. had a remarkably smooth annual meeting Thursday. Shareholders of the Wall Street bank voted to elect 10 directors and approved executive compensation at a protest-free annual meeting. The shareholders also voted against three shareholder proposals concerning compensation, cumulative voting and lobbying expenses.
A ‘Sentiment-Driven, Rumor-Driven, Nonsense-Driven Market’ [TWSJ] This is not an easy time to be even a professional investor. The markets are moving and reacting to the Greek crisis faster than officials in Europe can respond. With little hard news out there, and with Greece on the verge of pulling Europe deeper into some kind of downward spiral, you’re getting sharp moves like the one in U.S. stocks yesterday, and the overnight move in the euro that took the common currency nearly below the $1.25 mark.
NYSE and Nasdaq Face Off for Facebook [VIDEO]