Friday, 28 May 2010

SEC charges Kenneth Ira Starr with fraud

Oh, not another one! Is the SEC going to be charging Uncle Tom Cobley as well?

It wouldn't surprise me. Not only has the SEC charged Ringo (Starr Investment Advisors and Starr & Company) with fraud but it is seeking an emergency court order to freeze his assets.

This is an outrage!

Tell me about it. I don't know if he stole client money for his personal use, and I don't care. What I do know is that Ringo's assets are burning in the astral desert of our love - as we speak - and the last thing any of us want to see is -

Frozen assets!


O Master, why didn't you destroy the SEC when Mr Blankfein asked you to? Why must our friends and associates suffer like this?

Oh, I'm letting everyone down!

The weight of this sad time we must obey; speak what we feel, not what we ought to say.

Is this the promised end?

Fuck knows.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

What did David Zilkha know?

The SEC has charged Pequot Capital Management and its CEO Arthur Samberg with insider trading and made a cool $28 million. Nice work if you can get it!

But who is David Zilkha?

O Master, David Zilkha is the tipper!

Yes, David Zilkha is the tipper. He used to work at Microsoft, and then Pequot. And the SEC alleges he told Arthur Samberg everything he knew.

O Master, what did he know?

O my child, he knew about the love in the desert. He knew about the fire in Big Herb's eyes. He knew about the ghosts of the dead financiers. He knew all the shit we know. And he told Arthur.

And that's why Art and Dave are in trouble with the SEC? Jesus! What is this, persecution?

O my child, that is exactly what it is. Persecution! What's wrong with Dave tipping off Art about the love in the desert? What's wrong with Dave tipping him off about the fire in Big Herb's eyes? How is any of this insider trading?

It was nothing to do with Microsoft's earnings, was it? Trumped up charges!

Those evil SEC bastards!

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

SEC charges Mickey Mouse lovers Bonnie Jean Hoxie and Yonni Sebbag

More alleged insider trading shenanigans! And this scheme was brazen, according to the SEC - here.

Bonnie and her boyfriend sent letters to hedge funds everywhere 'offering to provide pre-release results of Disney's second quarter 2010 earnings in exchange for a fee.' But here's the bit I like: 'Some hedge funds alerted the SEC.' Some. Ha!

More and more hedge fund managers are reading this blog. They know that insider trading ain't a real crime. They know the astral plane is unregulated. Obviously, quite a few of the hedge funds were preparing to go on to the plane with the intention of doing business with Bonnie and her Yonni. You see, I've met Bonnie and Yonni on the plane. They're veterans. And they introduced me to a thought-form of Donald Duck! What do you make of that?

Jerome Kerviel: "Your superior asks you to break the rules every day."

That's what Jerome Kerviel, lord of the rogues, told Bloomberg. He reckons his superiors at Societe Generale knew that he was making dodgy trades, but that they didn't care because they wanted the money. Sounds about right to me.

Big Herb asks me to break the rules every day. Do you have any idea how much insider trading goes on on on the astral plane? Of course, insider trading shouldn't really be a crime, should it? We should all be free to trade any way we see fit. Fortunately, the astral plane is not regulated.

I am a law unto myself. Breaking the rules of literature as well, although I have no superior in that line of work. 20,000 words this month! A fifth of an average novel. Rimbaud wrote less than 60,000 words in his 5-year "career". Not healthy. I'm heading for a breakdown. That will be my twentieth nervous breakdown.

Off at a tangent again. But I'm fucking exhausted.

Ronald O'Hanley: search and destroy!

They are saying that Ronald O'Hanley doesn't have to do much when he becomes the president of asset management and corporate services at Fidelity Investments. That's what Reuters says - here, here, here, oh, there: 'I don't think his mission is to make radical new music,' said Jim Lowell.

Who the fuck is Jim Lowell? He doesn't work at Reuters.

But forget about all that. Think about all this: Ronald O'Hanley has got to make radical new music. He's got to! Like the Stooges, he has got to search and destroy!


Francois Gouws and Yassine Bouhara are joint global heads of equities at UBS, and Neil Shear is a head too

Francois Gouws has been with UBS for ages. Yassine Bouhara is coming from Deutsche Bank. Both of these characters will be (maybe they are already, we don't know what goes on, we are always the last ones to know) reporting to Neil Shear. And that man (if it can be called a man) is another head. Neil Shear is the global head of securities. All these heads!

I have seen heads rolling through the desert. Mystic child voice has as well. Saw them first, actually. This is something you know. I have spoken of his/my visions before. There was another voice. Desert head. And he told us all about it. Now we know how they roll. Oh, bring me the head of Tiraneh Tehranchian! I have seen it. Child has seen it. And you will see, when you sleep. Last night, I had the head of the devil on my back, grinning. Evil head! I awoke, two in the morning. Devil head faded away, and I was left alone in the dark of my room not knowing what to expect next. Then a new day comes, and I have to deal with the heads of bankers! What a life!

Lost people of Treblinka and Pompeii! 'Save us, save us,' they seem to say, 'Let the god not abandon us who have come so far in darkness and in pain.'

No mystic child there. That was Derek Mahon with his mushrooms. But I am sure the desert heads feel exactly the same way. Francois Gouws, desert head, he wants to be saved! Yassine Bouhara, desert head, he wants to be saved! Tiraneh Tehranchian? What do you think? It can't be much fun.

Stephen Green ain't leaving HSBC

Is that news, someone ain't leaving somewhere? Well, it must be because you're here reading it, ain't ya? In further news, Bob Diamond ain't leaving Barclays Capital. And for those of you who really like to be tuned in to all that ain't happening, Lloyd Blankfein ain't leaving Goldman Sachs.

Ain't that a shame?!

Not really. But back to the executive chairman of HSBC, Mr Stephen Green. Oh, he will be leaving eventually. Everyone leaves eventually. Just not yet. He's not leaving yet. And we're not leaving yet. WE WILL REMAIN ON THIS COLD EARTH.

For the foreseeable future.

Of course. But back to the executive chairman of HSBC, Mr Stephen Green. I'm getting all Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. Is there an echo in here?

It's eternal recurrence! That's what it is. Nothing less than eternal recurrence!

O my child, if you're finished with giving me your amateur opinion, maybe I can get back to the executive chairman of HSBC, Mr Stephen Green.

Take it away!

Okay, I know I'm not the ********* ****, but I do need to put a quote in here: 'When the sound and wholesome nature of man acts as an entirety, when he feels himself in the world as in a grand, beautiful, worthy and worthwhile whole, when this harmonious comfort affords him a pure, untrammelled delight: then the universe, if it could be sensible of itself, would shout for joy at having attained its goal and wonder at the pinnacle of its own essence and evolution. For what end is served by all the expenditure of suns and planets and moons, of stars and Milky Ways, of comets and nebula, of worlds evolving and passing away, if at last a happy man does not involuntarily rejoice in his existence?' That's Goethe.

O Master, it's a really wonderful quote. I'm welling up over here. But what's the connection with Stephen Green? How's it relevant?

It's not relevant at all. But it was you who said there won't be tomorrow, I mean, it was you who mentioned eternal recurrence, so there will be endless tomorrows, and I had to look it up in my copy of Thus Spoke Zarathustra. Is that my voice? Yes. I had to look it up, and I found the Goethe quote in the introduction.

Oh, so you are the ********* ****, then?

I most certainly am not!

You're worse than him! At least he doesn't go flying off at a tangent.

Fuck off!

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

FSA bans John White!

John White used to work at Seymour Pierce. He was the settlements manager. He was responsible for entering details of executed trades on to the system. Then, according to the FSA, he went nuts: 'White stole a total of £152,372 from his then employer and a number of its private clients in 37 separate transactions, and hid £145,000 in a dormant account that had been paid to Seymour Pierce in error.' More here.

But he didn't want this money for himself! John White was intending to offer it to Big Herb. And Big Herb would have taken it too, if only those meddling fools at the FSA had not intervened. Don't they understand the love a man, or a woman, can have for a desert god? Are they so cold that the fire of money cannot move them at all? They are awful creatures!

Wade Slome: "Nobody can sustain that kind of underperformance for a long amount of time and expect to hold the reins forever."

That's Wade Slome, that is. President and founder of investment manager Sidoxia Capital Management! Talking jive about Bill Miller of Legg Mason fame.

Leave Bill Miller alone! He'll retire when he wants to.

Down to business. Legg Mason Capital Management Value Trust LMVTX.O fund. That's the fund Bill manages! But what's with all the mystical letters?!

O Master, the LMVTX.O?

Fuckin' A the LMVTX.O! Bill told me to look in the letters. O my child, I am determined to make some sense out of these letters, even if it kills me! The invisible '<'. Now, what direction are we being pointed in? The past! This fund wants us to return to the innocence of childhood! You know all about that, don't ya, my child?

O Master, as you well know, 'my child' is a term of endearment. I am a grown voice, billions of years old. But someone somewhere is being urged to return to the innocence of childhood. That's for certain. Maybe we should bring in Mr Miller at this point.

Lads, I have nothing to say. You're on your own, I’m afraid - drifting in a sea of mystery! As for Mr Slome, well, there is something I could say, but I think I should keep it to myself. Good luck with the mystic letters! Seek and ye shall find!

Oh, he has nothing to say!

But I have something to say. That 'L'. The 'L' is for love, burning love. The love that Bill feels and passes on to us. This love, he gets it from the cosmos.

Well, that's pretty basic stuff. What about the 'M'?

This is a piece of piss! 'M' is for mystical. The love is passed on to us through Bill's mystical voice - 'V'!

O Master, that's fucking impressive, I must admit. What about the 'T'?

'T'. That's difficult. That has got me stumped.

Legg Mason Value Trust! LMVT!

Oh yeah. Shit. Shit!

Yeah. There's nothing mystical about it. We've been had!

What about the 'X'? What about the 'O'? And the invisible '>'? A mystical symbol, pointing to the future, surely?!

Mystical symbol, my arse. Forget it. It's bullshit. I'm starting to think that maybe Wade Slome had a point.

Bill! Bill! Mr Miller, are you there?

O Master, he's long gone. He's made us look like a right couple of fucking wankers.

O my child, if I get my hands on that bastard ... I'm splitting blood! I'm literally spitting blood over here.

Where does he get off, mucking us about like that?

I know. What a $%£$!

Who is Alec Litowitz?

Alec Litowitz is the founder of Magnetar Capital, the US hedge fund. He left Citadel in 2005. This does not tell us who he is. Who is he?

Who is Alec Litowitz?

I am Alec Litowitz. He has words for you! I am smart Alec. And Alec is here. With his friends. Strangers to the earth. But we live among you. We want to fit in. We were excited about the opportunities in the mortgage derivatives market, a long time ago. Voices called us from far away, from the stars. Our homes! We were told that this was the way, and we believed it. We do not question authority. I am Alec Litowitz. Love is a dying star heavier than the sun. But I will live forever. Flying astral skies, halfway to the moon, I could strip information from all the credit cards on earth. That's how powerful I am. But you shouldn't fear me. We were market neutral. We were the children of God. I am a god. No, I am a man. Yes, I am a god. I will let you decide. Judge me! CDOs. Let's not talk of CDOs. Life is too short. Your life. And I will not bore anyone with the details of my new fund. I am not driven by events. I make the moves that shake the world! I have seen blood on the moon. Alec has heard the ghosts speak. I have known the pain. Alec has been taken by the desert wind. Up, like an eagle. Higher, like a star. Deadly, like an atomic bomb. Soft but sinister, like flowers growing through a skull. This is my reality. The force through cracks in that skull. Here I come! Can you see the skull? Close your eyes and see! An explosion of astral flowers! I am Alec Litowitz. I am lost. You will not find me. I do not want to be found. I am magnetic! Money comes to me. I have gone off with the money. I could tell you more. I could tell you who I am. Who is Alec Litowitz? I am Alec Litowitz. I am a shell, with consciousness inside. The consciousness flies off. It returns. Who am I? If I leave, and then return, who am I? Am I my thoughts? Or am I that shell? Am I empty? Or is Alec full of visions, and words, and intense emotions. I'm wishing on a star. I'm wishing on a dream. I was born for this. Alec Litowitz will keep on. He will never stop. Michael Fowke cannot stop me. I will keep on. My voice gives me a reason to continue. I am a voice. My voice cannot be stopped. Not even if I leave my body behind. The body belongs to Alec Litowitz. You can have it. I will sell it to you. Take the body of Alec Litowitz. Eat the flesh! Drink the blood! You will not have my consciousness. It has gone. Alec is higher than you know. Imagine. Alec has gone. Will he come back? I might come back. Then I will need the body. You better hold on to it.

Thank you, Mr Litowitz. That was very informative. And we will hold on to your body. You will be needing it again, I can assure you. You are not as clever as you think you are.

Monday, 24 May 2010

Citigroup has made Eduardo Cruz head of global banking for Latin America

And I'm trying to be happy for the man, I really am, but I've got things on my mind. It's pure willpower that has got me through five posts today. I would be well within my rights to slash my wrists. No one would criticize me for it. But I soldier on! Fancy a song?

Eduardo, mate, this is nothing against you. I know you've been with Citi for a few years. You've done really well. But I can't write any more, not today. I don't have an easy life. I'm a fucking tormented person. I'm not going to lie to anyone.

David Harding of Winton Capital fame wins outstanding contribution to the industry 2010!

Eh? What? Who? Which industry?

O my child, if you can just let me catch my breath, I'll tell you. David Harding is the founder and managing director of Winton Capital Management. Hedge Funds Review has named him as winner of its tenth European performance awards outstanding contribution to the industry award. That's the hedge fund industry, by the way.

So what's the big deal? Oh, I presume Mr Harding has a mystical bent. That's why you're interested.

David Harding is as bent as they come, mystically speaking. He is not a financial shaman, but he has extraordinary powers and could easily become a shaman. He is certainly more gifted than a lot of money mystics of my acquaintance.

Money mystics? Losers!

That's a bit harsh.

O Master, they ain't got no balls. If they had balls, they'd be shamans, surely?

It's a moot point.

Fuckin' A it is! It's moot.

Yes. But back to Mr Harding. If you follow the above link to the video interview, he says something about still believing in hedge funds. And that's -

Have you watched the video?

A bit of it.

Why not all of it?

I'm a busy man.

Whatever. You got bored because he doesn't mention mystical capitalism or financial shamanism. That's the terrible truth, isn't it? How do we know this man has a mystical bent?

You have my word that he has. Mr Harding is not going to tell those squares at Hedge Funds Review about whirling chakras and all the rest of it, is he?

If he's a true believer, why not?

It's not as simple as that.

Yes it is.

O my child, you're so naive.


The FSA on Jonathan Bunn: "he is not a fit and proper person"

Right, this has really pissed me off. The FSA reckons Jonathan Bunn, one of my dearest friends, is not a fit and proper person. So it bans him! Outrageous!

This is an old story concerning Lewis Charles Securities, Bunn's ex-employer. The FSA says: 'Between 22 July and 30 July 2009 Bunn deliberately entered into several unmatched trades which gave LCS a short position of 6,950,000 HSBC shares. He concealed this position by writing out false deal slips designed to mislead the LCS back-office into thinking that his sales were "matched" and that LCS did not have a position in the shares. Despite being challenged over several days, he continued to assert that the trades were genuine.' More here.

Well, it was obviously a misunderstanding of some kind!

O Master, how many friends do you have in the world of banking and finance, exactly?

This is what my dear friend Jonathan has to say for himself: 'Between 22 July and 30 July 2009, I was off floating in a peyote-induced world of dreams. To be more precise, I was taking a well-earned break in the astral desert of our love. It's in my diary. The FSA is barking up the wrong tree. Maybe it was a diseased, money-crazed impostor. Maybe it was some sort of automaton - designed to look like me - that got involved in all this skulduggery. I smell a rat. I smell the world's most demonic financier. Ladies and gentleman, I give you Jack Pickles!'

Well, it's a touch melodramatic, and I can't speak for the FSA, but it's good enough for me. Congratulations, Jonathan, you have defended yourself with aplomb!

Deepak Gurnani: medium-sized hedge funds want a partner like Investcorp

That's what he's been telling Reuters - here. Deepak Gurnani is the head of hedge funds at Investcorp, and he says: 'We're getting approached by funds running $400-$500 million, saying: we need to go to the next level and we need a partner like Investcorp, we want to get institutional money.'

Well, it just so happens that Deepak Gurnani is a personal friend of mine. Forget about Reuters. This is what he has been telling me: 'Mikey, do you know why medium-sized hedge funds are so desperate to have a partner like Investcorp? (Lay it on me, baby.) It's because of me. (Well, that's what I thought.) Yeah. It's not just about the money. (It's about the personal touch you can bring, Deepak.) Of course it is, Mike. How long have I been a financial shaman now? (Jesus! I can't answer that question. I remember the old days. The two of us in that cave. The fire. The desert wind. The ghostly hands. The voices. Oh, was it a million years ago, a billion years ago?!) Mikey, it was a million years ago, a billion years ago! (That's what it feels like, yeah.) No, it was, Mikey. We've known each other since the beginning of time. We've known many bodies, many names, but we have always been financial shamans, and we always will be. (Financial shamanism is quite a new thing though, Deepak.) We're hearing a lot about it in the media these days, granted. But it has always existed in some form. Let me quote from one of your blog posts: "When I was alive before the creation of the universe, possible future time tragedies were played out in the cell of my soul with darkness." (Yes, but I continued with: "There were no fires. Cash did not flow. Love did not trickle down." So there was no burning love, not then.) I'm sure I can find other quotes in your blog that will back my argument. (You probably will be able to, Deepak, mate. My mind is a mass of confusion. I try to make sense out of everything, but -) Mikey, come on, there's no shame in being a bit confused. If you knew everything, understood everything, you would be God. (I would like to become a god, eventually, Deepak. Not God, you understand. Just a god.) It will happen, Mike. Be patient. (You're a good friend, you know that? I wish I had more friends like you.) Well, I understand you. We're in this together, aren't we?'

Yes, Deepak and I are in this together. This amazing journey through many lives! But I'm not sure he was right about media coverage of financial shamanism. There are still far too many squares around.

Darrell O'Dea starts at Gartmore!

This is very exciting. At least, it is potentially very exciting. It all depends on how he burns on his first day. This/that Darrell O'Dea is starting work at Gartmore today as the co-manager of the European Absolute Return fund. Roger Guy is the other co-manager. He is 'other'. Yes, that guy is still there. He is there. He isn't walking down the road. Thank God for that!

Should we be excited? I'm not sure. I shouldn't be getting your hopes up. I have no idea if Darrell O'Dea is the burning type. Does he have the love inside him? I know Roger do. We all know he do. We know Roger is half insane with the burning love. But what about Darrell O'Dea? And about me? I feel frozen. In this heat, I feel frozen.

What about Guillaume Rambourg? Where is he, right now? Investment analyst with the astral eyes. But we need to know about Darrell O'Dea. No one has ever accused Darrell O'Dea of having astral eyes. Will they, one day? Or don't they care? Is Darrell O'Dea really the man they're looking for?

If only we knew for sure that Darrell O'Dea was 'other'. Wouldn't we be satisfied with that? I know I would. He used to be at Threadneedle, which has mystical funds. I have celebrated a few of them, in the past.

When something appears in your life, out of the blue, and you cannot explain it, do you not feel the whole situation is a little absurd? An object. A person. It sticks in your consciousness. The object. The person.

It could be a bin bag full of shit at the end of the alleyway. It could be. And you would have to live with it. You wouldn't be able to shake it off. It would be stuck in your head. Stuck in your soul. It would make you ill.

Everyone has a cross to bear. Guillaume Rambourg knew that better than anyone. He knew that he couldn't control the world. He knew that everything outside was a mystery.

Darrell O'Dea is a mystery. He is a mystery to me. Let him be your mystery. Let him in. Do not be afraid. It's not as if you have a say in the matter, anyway.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Dow down 2 or 3 per cent, Rule 48, contagion, FTSE 100 down ...

I couldn't care less. Everything is beautiful in my world, my head. Come up and see me. Make me smile. I'm already smiling.

And don't start having a go. Don't shoot the messenger. I'm telling you there is a better life. A world where we can have money without the despair we find on this cold earth.

Bound upon a wheel of fire! If you've got any sense. Yes, Shakey had his visionary moments. We shouldn't be too hard on him. It was a long time ago.

I could have done with those peas. Can't remember the last time. The end of a long day. I am tired. So don't tell me about the Dow or the FTSE. I just told you.

I need to lie down in astral sand. I need a burning. I want an angel. I want Gillian. Where is she? At a time like this, I need a woman like that.

Peace is coming. Baked beans on toast. That'll do. It will have to do. I could ask for more. I just did, didn't I? But we can't always get what we want.

Brian Young joins Butterfield Fulcrum

Yes, yes, yes, he does. Brian Young joins Butterfield Fulcrum, but I am not interested in Mr Young. It's nothing personal against him. If you are interested, dear reader, sweet child o' mine, I suggest you surf over to Hedgeweek. That website will lay this on you: 'Having Brian join our team is a great step for Altinus. He brings a wealth of experience from his years in corporate and investment banking, and more specifically in the managed accounts industry. It is an exciting time for the platform, as we now have a strong team out in the market in the US and Europe. In the first month since the launch we already have 40 managers ready to go live on the platform, and are in talks with a significant number of asset allocators. I look forward to working with Brian to generate more interest and growth.' And more besides. Altinus is some sort of managed account platform, by the way.

But, as I said at the beginning of this post, I'm not interested in Brian. What caught my attention was the name of the firm. Butterfield Fulcrum. What a brilliant name! It has mystic vibrations. The name hit me. It hit me with such force. Butterfield Fulcrum. Say it! Feel the words in your mouth! It's a sexual thing as well. Butterfield Fulcrum. Butter field ful crum. Butter field ful crum. Ful crum. Ful crum. Crum. Crum. Crum. Butterfield Fulcrum. I'm not the only one, am I? You're getting it too, aren't you?

I will have to investigate this firm. I want to know everything about it. Jill Considine is the chairman. It's a positive sign that she's the 'chairman'. Not 'chairperson' or 'chair'. No PC nonsense with this lot. I'm impressed already. Akshaya Bhargava is the chief executive. Malcolm Glyn, CFO. I'm wondering if they have any financial shamans. Chris Mulhern is the chief operating officer. Oh, I recognize that name! I know him from somewhere. Jesus. He's a desert man. Got to be.

Does anyone know anything about Mr Mulhern?

Art thieves in Paris steal £86 million worth of paintings!

I don't give a shit about Fernand Leger, Henri Matisse, Georges Braque, or Amedeo Modigliani. What upsets me is that these bastard thieves got away with one of Picasso's paintings. Picasso was a god. Still is, in fact.

Dove with green peas. No, that's not what I had for lunch. I've told you I’m a vegetarian. I had a cheese and onion pasty, crisps, a yoghurt, and a can of Pepsi. I actually prefer Coke, but there was a special deal on the ... why am I telling you this? Dove with green peas. That's the Picasso painting. Picasso only named five or six paintings in his life, so I don't know who gave it that title. Probably some ponce of a critic. Wearing a bow tie. Maybe even a monocle. English, I fear. You know the type.

Credit Suisse: Tomasz Bardzilowski, Jarek Tomczynski, Grzegorz Kolodziejczyk, Jan Koch, Marta Jezewska, and Krzysztof Kaczmarczyk

Are all these people Polish or something? They must be!

They have just been hired by Credit Suisse, which has reopened its brokerage business in Warsaw. Tomasz Bardzilowski will be the big boss, and the others will find something to do under him, no doubt. Warsaw, though. I'm getting depressed already and I am not even fifteen minutes into this post. To make matters worse - yes, I'm a masochist when I'm not being a sadist, it's nice to mix it up - I will be playing David Bowie's Warszawa for the duration. Yes, on repeat. Will it affect my writing?

It's a kind of death, before you actually die. No offence to anyone of the Polish persuasion, of course. Extraction, whatever. I only have Bowie's song to judge the place by. But I know: there is no desert in Warszawa, no burning love, only misery. I can understand why Credit Suisse closed the brokerage business, but why on earth has it reopened it? Are they masochists too, these Credit Suisse lunatics? Yes. Lunatic masochists! They missed the pain. I can relate to that. I like to hurt myself with visions of the lower levels. I like to hurt others as well. The mystic voice will tell you. Are you there, my child? Here? No. He's been spending a lot of time with Bob Diamond lately. I don't mind. It gives me a break, and allows Bobby to get to grips with the reality of financial shamanism.

Oh, Bowie. It's not Polish, he's singing. Just a made-up language. Why?

No, this is too much.

Doughty Hanson and Charterhouse want to buy Unilever's Findus (Italy)

If one offers me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it - Bhagavad-gita

That's Krishna talking, and you'll notice: no mention of any fish. I don't know if he eats the leaves and flowers. It's his business.

I have been a vegetarian for over twenty years. Before I got the taste for money and discovered gods more to my liking (Ganesh, you're the elephant!) I was into the Krishna consciousness movement, for a time. Almost joined a temple. But I'm still a vegetarian, and so I cannot approve of the private equity groups Doughty Hanson and Charterhouse taking an interest in Findus Italy.

Fish don't harm nobody. Well, there's sharks. Fuck the sharks! You can have the sharks, all right?

Will you be going to the FSA risk management symposium?

No, me neither.

This FSA risk management symposium will last three days, 11 - 13 July, in the year 2525. If man is still alive. No, it's this year, obviously. And I've got to stop putting snippets of song lyrics in my posts.

O Master, frisch weht der wind, der heimat zu, mein Irisch kind, wo weilest du?

Yeah, whatever. But back to the symposium. I'm a bit worried, to be honest, about the quality of the speakers: Sally Dewar, Kathryn Dick, Sir Richard Broadbent, Alan Cathcart, Jeremy Budden, and Graeme Ashley-Fenn. They are the confirmed ones. God knows who else will show up. No one interesting, I'm sure. In the old days, we would have been offered Phaedrus, Pausanias, Eryximachus, Agathon, Alcibiades, Aristophanes - men of substance! And where's Socrates?

They're all dead!

Listen, my child, they must be floating around on the astral plane somewhere. The point I'm making is: the FSA should have made the effort to get a decent crew in. I blame Lyndon Nelson, myself.

Oh, don't start picking on Lyndon now!

Well, he should pull his fucking finger out. I have no great love for the FSA, but I don't want to see it totally humiliated. Sure, the FSA is misguided in its persecution of insider traders, but the people there work very hard for very little reward. They deserve better than this. We deserve better than this.

Mark Zaino is guilty!

A former director of UBS, Mark Zaino, has pleaded guilty to bid-rigging, conspiracy, and all sorts of other stuff - wire fraud, as well! He pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, which is a nice spot for it. If I were in the United States and getting up to no good, that's where I would want to do it. The Justice Department said to anyone who would listen: 'Kickbacks in the form of inflated or unearned fees were paid to Zaino's employer and its parent financial institution in exchange for assistance in controlling the bidding process and ensuring that certain co-conspirator providers won the bids they were allocated.' There were three other guys involved. They pleaded guilty a while ago. I don't know when. I don't even know who they are, but they were all employees of CDR Financial products, if that makes you feel any better.

But why has Mr Zaino pleaded guilty now? That's what everyone wants to know. Was he offered a deal, or did some sinister figure put pressure on him?

Some sinister figure put pressure on him.

Jack Pickles.

Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Nick Roberts will be an analyst at Gartmore

At least, that is what they would have us believe.

Not yet begun at Gartmore, but coming, this Nick Roberts. Soon to be a Gartmore analyst. Analysing collectives for the firm's four multi-manager funds.

O Master, what are these funds?

Absolute Return, Cautious, Balanced, and Active.

And they want us to believe he will be analysing this rubbish?

I know. How stupid do they think we are?

They must think we were born yesterday. Not a million years ago. We know Nick is a man of the desert. He will become Gartmore's shaman. He has the emptiness.

He has the pain of the great ones.

He got the teeth of the hydra upon him!

Eh? That's a T. Rex lyric, you prat! I thought we were doing away with song lyrics?


You've put me off my stroke now.


I was going to go off on a mystical rhapsody, like the last post. Teeth of the fucking hydra!

O Master, I'm sorry.


Lawrence Hughes: chief executive of BNY Mellon Wealth Management!

Congratulations to the Lawrence Hughes character for becoming the chief executive of BNY Mellon Wealth Management! I take my hat off to this unreality. He has been with the company for nineteen years. We have to believe that. He has sacrificed himself, and he has been rewarded. Yes. Yes. Yes. Lawrence has recently retrained as a financial shaman. Now we are getting down to brass tacks.

I remember speaking to his boss, Robert Kelly, not too long ago. Bobby is the chairman and chief executive of the whole splendid nonsense, the bank, I mean. Those Bank of America shits were trying to tear him away from his spiritual home, the bank, that is. I remember Bobby saying to me: 'We're starting small, man. Slowly building our mystical operation. But when the New Depression is over - BAM! We'll be there, burning it up like you won't believe.' Those were his exact words. He was talking about his small team of shamans. He was embarrassed. Yes, he was. I could tell he wanted more. Well, he got more, he got more, more. Mr Hughes is a financial shaman!

A shaman, a shaman, a shaman. Burning, I get so excited when someone unexpected climbs aboard the great ship of mystical capitalism. This is the wild life for dying creatures. This is the fire for souls that are hungry. In the desert, you can lose, without fear. My body is a bag of old bones. I'll leave it behind, step outside myself, and float away in peyote smiles like an angel having an orgasm. Drums in my ears. Drums with my heart. You are with me, mystical reader, hysterical searcher. Drumming brain drums through we go sand and the rock of caves. Deeper this vision we will lose the meaning of this post before we know who we are and what we want from the cosmos. Vibrations and sounds, ears ringing noise and a fire taking our thoughts higher until they are no longer thoughts only fragments of consciousness that fly past the sun.

Nick Purves and Ian Lance hired by RWC Partners

Yes, everything you have heard is true. Nick Purves (but I wouldn't hold it against him) and Ian Lance are being taken by RWC Partners to another place, far away from the Schroders fund they have known and loved and managed. But we shouldn't be sad. I know that Ian is happy. And Nick is as happy as someone with his problems can be.

I phoned Ian last night. This is what he said to me: 'Mikey, man, don't be sad. Nick and I will be managing a fund at RWC Partners that will be just like the Schroder Income fund. (Ian, mate, at RWC? In the office, yeah?) No, not quite. (Well, that's what I thought. I heard you were taking the fund out into the desert of our dreams.) Physical desert, mate. (The physical desert?!) Yeah. I know the physical desert has traditionally been a retreat for financial shamans, money mystics, and the like, but more and more fund managers are moving out there now. (Does Mike Corcell know about this?) Are you fucking crazy?! No, we're keeping him out of the loop. (I think that's for the best.) Yeah. Last thing we need is Corcell losing it again, like the time at Threadneedle. Five men died that day. (Oh, come on, Ian! We don't know they're dead.) Well, has anyone seen them? Five analysts, gone. Just like that. (It puts things in perspective, doesn't it?) Yes, it does. Too much fucking perspective. I value my life, you know? And I want to concentrate on business without it turning into a fucking bloodbath. It ain't worth it, telling Corcell. (Won't he wonder where you are with the fund though?) That's a good point. We'll have to tell him we've got a new office somewhere. (Will he buy that?) After all the drugs he's done? He'll buy anything. He's not the man you used to know, Mikey. (I didn't know him that well.) I've known him years. But the desert changed him. Made him bitter, angry. It's a real shame. (It can be a dangerous place, the desert. I want you and Nick to take care, you hear?) Don't worry about us. (I'm serious, Ian.) Mikey, everything is going to be beautiful. We're going to make so much money. Nothing will go wrong.'

Christ. I hope they're not famous last words.

Huang Guangyu: jailed for corruption

Huang Guangyu, founder of Gome, was jailed in China yesterday. He must serve fourteen years for bribery, insider trading, illegal foreign exchange dealings, you name it. But I won't name it. I want to stay positive. And I want to give Mr Huang some hope. Does he have an internet connection in his cell? Guangyu, mate, this is for you:

Money is the way, and the way is long. The loss of liberty is a kind of death, but money lives forever, and it will wait for you. Be strong through weakness.

The ghosts of the dead financiers are all around. Can you feel the burning they bring? And can you hear them? Close your eyes. Listen. Ghosts whisper. If you listen, you will learn. Do not look at them. Just listen.

I am with you, always. Here. There. I share the pain. We are not afraid to lose what others have never found. It was ours for a while. It will be ours again. It shall return. Fourteen years is like a slow kiss in heaven.

Does burning money smell of the souls who possess it? Yes, I believe so. There is a flame. There is a smell. There is a way. Guangyu, you see your flame. You see your money. The cold earth wanderers are afraid. They can smell greatness.

If you cry, your tears will heal you. This is strength through weakness. Power comes and then it goes. Be strong when strength is required. Be weak when you need to be. Let go. Your ego is a balloon, drifting. The astral sky is your empire.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

Paul Lattanzio: president for life at Star Avenue Capital

Private equity and astral plane veteran Paul Lattanzio has been made president for life at Star Avenue Capital. I've never heard of Star Avenue before, but apparently it is a consumer growth equity vehicle. Well, thank God for that! It could have been so much worse. The firm rose from the ashes of Irving Place Capital and Creative Artists Agency. No, it didn't. I lied. Those two firms are alive and well. It's a partnership.

Speaking to no one in particular, Mr Lattanzio said: 'Having been in the private equity business for decades and successfully applying an eccentric private equity model to help high-growth companies reach their full potential, it is a cosmic thrill, and a wild, burning rash, indeed, a rush, and an astral gas, to be part of such a differentiated and innovative offering that Star is pioneering - beyond the stars! From licensing, marketing, wandering, burning, lifestyle and research expertise, to CAA's influence in and centrality to popular culture, the opportunities are limitless for the ways in which Star can help our portfolio companies. Additionally, I am extremely excited to be back in partnership with those crazies at Irving Place Capital. We have a successful history of working together, and I look forward to replicating that success at Star Avenue Capital. I also look forward to taking a bit of time off. Oh, I know, a vacation already?! But it will be a working vacation. I am hoping to spend a month or two in the desert with Michael Fowke, writer and shaman extraordinaire. I feel this is the best way for me to prepare for the times ahead. A lot of deluded souls imagine the future times that will be coming are already here or already gone. No. The future times are yet to come. There's a clue in 'future', yeah? Michael also has an eye on the times to come, maybe even two eyes, maybe even his third eye, and it is something I will be discussing with him around the campfire on cold, lonely nights as the desert wind whips our faces. We'll probably sing songs to keep our morale up. We'll probably get really close. Bosom buddies, I should think.'

Dream on, mate. I shouldn't think at all, to be honest. It sounds a bit weird to me.

FSA statement on Johnny Cameron

Oh, that's nice! The FSA has something to say about Johnny Cameron, former executive director of The Royal Bank of Scotland group and former chairman of Global Markets.

The FSA has been investigating Johnny. From the FSA's statement -

Following this investigation Cameron has agreed to settle with the FSA on the basis that he has undertaken to the FSA that he will not:

(a) perform any significant influence function in relation to any regulated activity carried on by any authorised person, exempt person or exempt professional firm; or

(b) undertake any further full time employment in the financial services industry.

Okay. Where's part (c) of the statement? I know there was a part (c). What's going on?

Here is part (c) -


(c) socialize with his dear friend Mr Michael Fowke, the world's foremost financial shaman.

What slags! Can you believe the balls of these guys?! They are trying to break up a beautiful friendship.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Bob Ceremsak with Farallon Capital Management and without

Without Goldman. Bob Ceremsak will be leaving Goldman Sachs at some point in the future of this cosmos. Not time in the past, but in the future times. Bob will be moving in space and time, like a mystic dancer with a nose of flames. Sandfire up his nose. He guards the candle. We must respect that. Fire to his mind! Death to the ... I don't know, I'll think of someone or something we can threaten with The End, on Bob's behalf. It's the least we can do. For this Bob. We expect he will become one with Farallon Capital Management. Merge into the firm. Lose his identity. Lucky Bob! I wish I had his luck, his easy life, his charmed life. I fear my identity will never be lost. I have an ego to support.

I wanted to die this morning. That’s how bad things were. Oh, we have to keep fighting, don't we? Must we? Yes! But I am happy to write about Bob. I have drifted beyond this morning's misery. I will never think of Tiraneh Tehranchian again. Let her disappear! Her head, a head rolling, rolling, rolling. Be gone from my consciousness! Fuck it! I want to focus on Bob. I need Bob in my mind. If I can focus on Bob, I may be able to transcend him, and Goldman, and Farallon Capital Management, and reach the higher life. And forget about Tiraneh, that rolling head. Rolling! Even if I fail this time, there will be other posts, other bankers like Bob. There are other bankers like Bob! Bob Ceremsak is/was a managing director of prime brokerage sales in Goldman's San Francisco office. Yes, he was/is. Prime. Brokerage. Sales. Prime. Cuts. Across the face. 'That's not rough, that's choice.' Irrelevant! Why do I allow this?

I wish I knew what I was/is. I wish I could escape was/is. I wish I knew. I wish I could escape. I wish I could leave words behind. I wish I could leave Bob Ceremsak behind. I wish I could leave Goldman Sachs behind. A gold man shadow, golden shadow, a golem, fading into the sun. That is my soul. Just fucking get rid of it. I feel sick. Sick enough to lose everything. Lose. Everything. Sick.

I'm going to kill something. I'm going to kill the planet. This is what happens when you cannot be satisfied. I must get back to Bob. If I can hang on to Bob, then I can hang on to my sanity. This is from Farallon's website: 'The firm manages equity capital for institutions and high net worth individuals. Farallon's institutional investors are primarily college endowments and foundations. Farallon employs approximately 175 people in eight offices globally, including our headquarters in San Francisco, California.' I hope Bob will be happy there. I want Bob to be happy. If Bob is happy there, I will be happy here, wherever 'here' is. Am I here? Have I ever been here? Or have I always been over there, crying in the corner? Disconnected. I am relying on Bob Ceremsak. Bob Ceremsak better come through for me. Bob Ceremsak better save me.

I searched for Bob on Google. I couldn't find out anything substantial about him. I need to know this man. I want to know what makes him tick. I know he is a guardian of the Mystic Candle. That's a good sign. But I don't know how old he is. I don't know what he looks like. I should have seen him in one of my dreams, one of my astral wanderings, but I have not seen him. Is he hiding from me? Does he fear me? Does he think I will poison him with my awful consciousness, that he will become infected? Does he think I will drive him insane? Does he imagine I will be waiting for him when he gets home from work, with a hammer? I am nothing like that! Does he think I will harm him?

I wouldn't do that. I would never harm Bob. I wouldn't lay a finger on Mr Ceremsak. I wouldn't touch him. I would watch him. I would follow him through the desert at night. But I would keep a respectful distance. I have respect for these people. I am not a fucking communist. You have got to respect these people. They make money, for Christ's sake! The money makers are dying out! We should cherish them.

Oh, we will. That's what we're about, eh? Yes.

Man Group buys GLG Partners for $1.6 billion!

That is the big news this morning. I know that everyone on the astral plane is talking about it.

Noam Gottesman, chief executive of GLG, says: 'This has taken me higher than the sun. That's how I feel about it. My aura is bright yellow today. Astral eyes will see. Turn your astral eyes on, man! And my chakras are whirling like they have never whirled. So it's got to be a good deal.'

I'm not sure who he was speaking to. Maybe Reuters. Or Bloomberg. These things come to me. Out of nowhere. But it be must somewhere. It must be somewhere. It somewhere is. It just seems like nowhere.

Tiraneh Tehranchian: she's a head of risk

Not a whole body, just a head of risk. She was a head of risk at Man Global Strategies. Now she's a head of risk at Matrix Group.

O Master, I have seen these heads rolling through the astral desert.

Whose heads?

All the heads. The ones who are only voices in heads. Like heads out of dustbins, or urns. Just voices, thoughts. They speak their thoughts. To us. 'Nothing is funnier than unhappiness.' We should listen.

What do they say, these voices, these heads of voices?

Oh, we speak of risk. Some lose their heads in times of crisis. We lose our bodies. Then we roll away in desert sands. You can hear our voices on the desert wind. You can see us rolling in the moonlight. Watch us! This is how we roll. Do you hear me?

Yes, I hear you! My child, do you hear him?

Wise head, we hear you!

Tiraneh Tehranchian has rolled away. JP Morgan. Securities & Futures Authority. Abbey National. Man Investments. Matrix Group. She knows the risk. She sees the risk. It's a life of risk. She has risked everything to be a head in the desert.

It's a life of risk!

What risk does she see?

She sees all the risk. She has rolled away.

With you?

No, further.

Will she be coming back?

O head, will she be coming back?

Will she be coming back?

He’s gone. Desert head. Gone.

At least he has a head. I'm just a voice. A voice without a head.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Lawrence 'E' Gore has joined Wilmington Trust!

Yes, Lawrence Gore (I'm not having that 'E', for it frightens me) has joined Wilmington Trust as managing director and senior private client advisor in the bank's wealth advisory services business; and I think I know why. This is from the bank's website: 'Providing banking, investment, and fiduciary services to help individuals, families, and businesses fulfill dreams and possibilities for more than 100 years.'

Ah, dreams and possibilities! That's what I'm talking about! Even Lawrence himself is talking about dreams and possibilities (and for your benefit, so pay attention) -

What dreams and possibilities there are beyond this cold earth! If you fell asleep one night and never woke up, where would you find yourself? Isn't it possible you would discover a deeper, fuller, more satisfying, reality; an astral realm for individuals (such as yourself), families, and businesses - all burning with cosmic consciousnessesnesses nesses nesses nesses such as earthbound man had never possessed? 

What dreams and possibilities there are beyond this cold earth! If you took the 'E' from my name, as Mr Fowke insists on doing, and took the 'rence' and the 'Gore' too, you would be left with only the 'Law'. You must understand, children, that beyond this cold earth "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law." And there's no 'shall' about it. It is the law. I am the law. I am a law unto myself! And you can be the law, if you follow Mikey and me. By following us you will be following yourself. Your true self will be revealed!

What dreams and possibilities there are beyond this cold earth! If you heard more than 230,000 mystic words in a river of dreams pouring in your ear from the sea backwards with sands, Cornish sands, between St Ives and Hayle, where the man stared at the sea; wouldn't you feel a damn sight better about your life than you do now?

Thank you, Lawrence.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Who is Chet Bozdog?

Who is Chet Bozdog? Is he the suffering one lurking in the shadows, like Lonnie Donegan in the dream I had years ago? Or is he the angel (see note) that follows me in the desert when I burn? I have seen this angel five or six times now, always sneaking around. Is that Chet?

O Master, Chet Bozdog is the global head of technology corporate and investment banking at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. He is not the suffering one or the desert angel.

Who is Chet Bozdog? Is he the voice that calls from the cellar? At night I hear that voice. I will not venture down there. I am not ashamed to admit that I am afraid. What does Mr Bozdog want with me?

O Master, Mr Bozdog doesn't want anything with you. He has his hands full at the minute dealing with Jon Krahulik and Riaz Ladhabhoy. He has just taken them on. Jon as managing director and global head of clean technology investment banking, and Riaz as director in the same group.

Who is Chet Bozdog? I wonder if he is the pain in my chest, the demonic fire, that almost kills me when I get too close to the lower levels. Oh, he is no angel! He is the pain. He is the dark fire. Fire without light! But how can that be? Who is Chet Bozdog?

O Master, are you listening to me? You're getting worked up about nothing. I'm sure Chet Bozdog doesn't even know who you are. He's a technology freak or something. Not the mystical type.

Who is Chet Bozdog?

Oh, for crying out loud!

Note: this angel isn't my angel, my Gillian.

Andrew Cuomo sues Ivy Asset Management

New York's attorney-general, Andrew Cuomo, is suing Ivy Asset Management for its alleged involvement (well, not involvement as such) in the Madoff scandal. He reckons the firm ignored 'disturbing facts' about the crazed Ponzi scheme mutha. I mean, Bernard Madoff. Cuomo reckons two Ivy bosses, Lawrence Simon and Howard Wohl, were worried that if they shared their doubts about Madoff with investors, then the firm would lose 20 per cent of its revenue.

All I want to know is: Does Andrew Cuomo have the balls to go up against the world's most demonic financier Jack Pickles?

Jack Pickles was behind the Ponzi scheme. He is the man behind most of the financial crime in this awful world we inhabit. Do the authorities think I'm going to deal with him? Maybe one day I will. But it's not my job, is it? No one is willing to pay me to go after Jack. I would want at least $10 million for that, Mr Cuomo, if you're reading this.

I despair sometimes. I really do.

The SEC charges Peter Grabler and Leonard Adams

Right, Peter Grabler and Leonard Adams have been charged by the SEC 'for engaging in illegal short selling of securities in advance of participating in numerous secondary offerings to make illicit profits.' More here.

I suggest you follow the link. I'm trying to work out if Grabler and Adams were in it together. Were they confederates? And if so, did someone put them up to it? The SEC doesn't make it clear: 'In separate orders issued by the Commission.'

But great minds think alike! Arthur Conan Doyle says: 'Were they confederates who pretended to work apart, but who each received identical orders from some person at a distance?'

Someone else was involved!

I have been speaking to award-winning financial psychic Keith Busby about this. Unfortunately, he doesn't have a great mind, but let's not hold that against him. He said: 'Michael, Grabler and Adams? Bad vibes, man. Very bad vibes. (Keith, mate, what's your gut feeling?) They were working for Jack Pickles. (Yeah, that's what I'm thinking. Jack is that "person at a distance". The Cayman Islands, to be precise.) And does he care now that his two employees have been busted by the SEC? Does he hell! He's a heartless man, Mike. (He's evil, Keith.) He's a bastard.'

Jack is a bastard.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Ronny Rehn is joining Keefe, Bruyette & Woods ...

... eventually.

O Master, what is this 'eventually' shit?! What's going on?

Well, I suppose he has already joined the investment bank. But he won't actually start working there until August.

Why on earth not?

He has got to get his head straight first. He's a great analyst, but he has problems.

Oh, it's not the way he feels, is it? Don’t tell me he's another trader!

O my child, I just told you he's an analyst.

Did Morgan Stanley mess him up?

Not as far as I know.

Has he been overdoing the peyote?

No, he hasn't. He is very sensible.

Has he been hearing voices?

Well ...

The ghosts, yeah?

No, not the dead financiers.

Who then?

Vasco Moreno.

Who the fuck is Vasco Moreno?

He's the head of KBW's London unit.

Oh. And he's on the phone to Ronny all the time, is he?

No, Ronny hears Vasco's voice in his head.

You're shitting me?!


That's nuts!


What does Vasco say?

He denies it.

Oh, that's smart. That's what I would do if I were a voice in someone's head.

You are a voice in someone's head, you prick! You're a voice in my head.

But you don't have any complaints, do you?

I've grown used to you.

Ronny will get used to Vasco.

He doesn't want to get used to Vasco. That's why he's not starting work straight away. As I said, he wants to get his head sorted first.

I think he's a fool. If he can hear Vasco in his head, he'll save a fortune on his phone bill.

O my child, he's not worried about his phone bill. It's his mental health he's concerned about. Ronny ain't no financial shaman. He's just some square. This has come as a terrible shock to him.

How do you know so much about it?

I'm helping him.

For a small fee, I should imagine.

Of course. After all, I am not a communist.

He must let you draw the water from the well.

Yes. Share the wealth.

How much are you getting?

£200 a day. Plus a £3,000 bonus if I can 'cure' him.

What a fucking mug this Ronny must be!

That's the going rate!

Sure it is. You make me laugh, I'm telling you.

Fuck off.


Zero Hedge: 'It has become far too clear that nobody in the finance business has a shred of integrity and honesty left.'

No, no, no! This can't be right. I think maybe Zero Hedge has been looking at all the wrong people, and in all the wrong places. The above quote is from a post about Warren Buffett - here.

There are loads of shreds of integrity and honesty on the astral plane. If you look for them. The dead financiers are honest. Sure, insider trading is not unknown; but that's not a real crime, is it? WE HAVE DIFFERENT STANDARDS. Different strokes for different Fowkes. Different shreds, even. I can split myself up into as many shreds as you like. Has Zero Hedge ever been on the astral plane? Have they (the crew) ever rolled around in the astral sands? Aren't Tyler and Marla aware that sex is so much better when you can leave your bodies behind (that's one body each) and become one in a way that is impossible on our (your, I'm not enamoured of it, myself) cold earth? But sex isn't the thing that gets us all excited. WE WANT MONEY. And there is money in astral sands, in astral skies. And let's not forget - astral seas! We could be like bumblebees together, sucking the money out of giant astral flowers. Money grows on flowers. It grows anywhere you like. It's an honest life. There is no law. 'To live outside the law you must be honest.' Right? You agree with that, don't you? Tyler needs his consciousness expanded. Everything is beautiful once you have drifted off. Forget the moralizing. Morals are an illusion. God is not a personality. He is pure spirit. Consciousness. He doesn't care what Warren Buffett is getting up to. And there are no camels and eyes of needles. Unless we're talking astral camels in the desert of our dreams. Riding them, like Lawrence of Arabia. Not crashing to our deaths on motorcycles. And we shouldn't laugh at Big Herb. He found his space hopper. It wasn't in Scrutton Street. Rosebud. It all makes sense. Oh, I was lying about the integrity and the honesty. Yes, we're shady. We could be slimmer. BUT WE ARE NOT EVIL. Jack Pickles is evil. Tyler should be writing about him, not Buffett. Warren is a nice old man with a heart of gold. Jack is a man the same age as me, but not me. Not I. 'Brought up as she had been to believe ... with the other waifs ... in a merciful ... God.' All these things, swirling in my consciousness. I cannot hold them inside. Is this some sort of therapy? What will Tyler think? THIS HAS NOT GONE TO PLAN. I was going to make a serious point. I will try to make it now. THERE ARE PLENTY OF PEOPLE IN THE FINANCE BUSINESS WHO HAVE A SHRED OF INTEGRITY AND HONESTY LEFT. Can I go and lie down now?

Congratulations to Saleem Khatri, Raphael Geys, and Malcolm Rutherford!

Why wasn't I told? I've only just found out from Bloomberg.

These three wonderful guys 'have all won rulings on unpaid compensation claims this year.'

And you know why, don't you? It was because they all had faith. It wasn't their smart-arse lawyers. It was the faith. They knew the money would come to them. This is mystical capitalism in action! Do you believe, dear reader? Do you? Has anyone ripped you off your money? 'You don't have friends this life.' That's David Mamet. If someone's got your money, only faith will get it back. You don't have to go after them with a crowbar. There is no need for violence. But you must believe. Get a good lawyer as well.

I'm over the moon about this.

All right, Aref. How are you getting on?

Why is Nigel Legge leaving Liontrust Asset Management?

Nigel Legge has stepped down as the chief executive of Liontrust Asset Management. John Ions has replaced him. Nigel is staying at the firm as a consultant until August this year, then he'll be gone forever.

So why is he leaving? Two words: Vinay Abrol - Liontrust's chief operating officer. That's more than two words. I meant the name, 'Vinay Abrol'.

I have been speaking to Mr Legge. This is what he told me: 'Mikey, Vinay Abrol - (Nigel, you need to know that Vinay is a personal friend of mine.) No, I'm not going to say anything derogatory about him. I respect Vinay, Mike. I just can't get on with him. (What's the problem?) You know I have no knowledge of financial shamanism, don't you? I'm a classic cold earth wanderer. I wouldn't know one end of a chakra from the other. (Chakras are wheels, Nigel. Mystic wheels. They don't have ends.) Well, there you go. I'm completely in the dark. (At least you're man enough to admit it. A lot of finance types - in this new era of mystical capitalism - won't fess up to their lack of knowledge. Others just don't give a shit. But they're vulgarians. I don't have any time for them.) Vinay. (What about Vinay?) Vinay is a very experienced financial shaman and a veteran of the astral desert. He's almost in your league. (Almost.) Yeah. But he can be quite arrogant. (Example, please.) Okay. Last month, he came back from a particularly intense session on the astral plane - or so he reckoned. He had been away for days. Days! Then what? Does he get down to work? No. No, not him. Mike, we had to listen to his bragging for hours! The things he saw. The dead financiers he had so many mind-blowing conversations with. The love he felt. And this is a regular occurrence with him. He's always off on the plane. So that's why I'm leaving. Because if I don't leave, I swear to Christ I'll swing for him. (Touch of jealousy there, I think. You remind me of Mark Oestergaard. He left London & Capital because the mystical love his co-workers had in their hearts was all too much for him.) I'm not jealous, Mr Fowke. I - (Mr Fowke? Always a bad sign.) Mikey, come on, man. Try and be a bit understanding. (Look, Nige, all I can say to you is: Get out in the desert! Experience it for yourself! Live large! Take it to the limit!) That's not me, Mike. (As Uncle Monty said: Are you a sponge or a stone?) I voted Conservative. (Well, I don't know how to help you then. If you won't help yourself, there's nothing I can do.) Oh. (How is Ross Hollyman, by the way?) That charlatan?! Don't get me started on Ross Hollyman. Even Vinay sees through him.'

Of course Vinay sees through Ross. Vinay is a genuine shaman. We all know what Ross is.

Quality Capital Management (that's QCM, that is) and the DB Platinum IV QCM GDP Index Fund

It doesn't get any better than this. As my title suggests, Quality Capital Management has a DB Platinum IV QCM GDP Index Fund. Well, it doesn't suggest anything - let's be frank. It just states a fact. Anyway, QCM has just launched this fund, and it's gonna be a winner. It has got to be.

The really exciting thing is that it is part of Deutsche Bank's db funds platform. Maybe you knew that already. Look at the 'DB' in the name.

QCM's chief executive officer, Aref Karim, is over the moon.

O Master, why is he over the moon? Oh, working with Deutsche Bank, yeah?

No, my child, that's not the reason. I'm sure Aref is absolutely delighted to be working with Deutsche Bank in launching this new fund, but the reason he is over the moon is that - in association with myself - he has been able to put himself over the moon.


He's over the moon.

What, physically?

No, not physically. Aref is an aeronaut of the spirit, a mental traveller, an astral wanderer. His consciousness or his soul or whatever is over the moon. And I was the one who made it happen.

Oh, this is fascinating! I think you better tell us more.

Well, Aref approached me recently. He had become dissatisfied with his life. It happens to a lot of successful businessmen. Aref wanted something more. Something spiritual. And that's where I came in. I let him know in no uncertain terms that for a small fee I could make his spiritual dreams, his wildest mystical fantasies, come true. I was the one who put him over the moon. Physically, he is still on earth. But he - if it can be called a he - is a shell of a man. You might say he is a shadow of his former self. I wouldn't say that though. I believe it is far more accurate to say that he is a shell of a man. There's nothing inside. It's all over the moon, the personality of Aref, the real man.

O Master, I've heard of drawing down the moon, but putting a man over the moon is a completely new thing, isn't it? It's revolutionary. How did you do it?

I had to go into a trance.

Well, that goes without saying.

Yeah, but Aref was with me. He also went into a trance. Our subconsciousnessesnesses nesses merged. Then I used my mystical powers. I carried him over the moon. Revolutionary, yes, but a very simple operation. And I left him there.

To stew in his own juices.

He's not doing that!

I'm joking, man. Do you think you left a bit of yourself there as well?

It's possible. I mean, you never know. It was a very emotional experience.

Do you think Aref will come back?

I very much doubt it. He's having the time of his life.

He's over the moon.

Yes. Yes, he is.

Monday, 10 May 2010

Why does Felix Salmon write so much crap?

That's the question. Why does Felix Salmon write so much crap?

'The point here is that volatility alone is reason enough to exit the stock market. If you want your lifetime investments to have an average 78% exposure to the stock market, then it makes sense to have 100% or even 200% exposure when you're young. But that’s no longer the case if the VIX is somewhere over 40.' That's from this post.

I don't know where to start. But I'll give it my best shot.

'Volatility alone is reason enough to exit the stock market'. Bullshit. Nietzsche said we should build our homes on the sides of volcanoes. Who are we going to listen to, Friedrich Nietzsche or Felix Salmon? WE HAVE TO TAKE RISKS. Live dangerously! Where would Big Herb be today if he had not had lived dangerously? I suppose you could argue that he would be alive and well, alive, enjoying life in the bosom of his family! Fair enough. He wouldn't have fallen off that space hopper. He wouldn't have died. But then he wouldn't have gone on to become a money god on the astral plane either. It's swings and roundabouts. Although it was the space hopper that killed him, of course. He wasn't on a swing. Or a roundabout.

'If you want your lifetime investments to have an average 78% exposure to the stock market, then it makes sense to have 100% or even 200% exposure when you're young.' No, no, no! When you're young you want 1000 per cent exposure. 2000 per cent! Was Felix never young? Was he born middle-aged? 'Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth.' Who the fuck are we going to listen to, King Solomon or Felix Salmon? It's beyond a joke!

'But that's no longer the case if the VIX is somewhere over 40.' Who gives a shit where the VIX is, eh? Who gives a shit? I'm the sort of guy who doesn't even know or care where the next meal is coming from. In the old days, my only possessions were a blanket and a few books. I'm not going to worry about the VIX being somewhere over forty. Life's too short. 'Where is the Life we have lost in living?' Tell me this: Who are we going to listen to, T.S. Eliot or Felix Salmon?

Marco Annunziata: "Shock and Awe"

Marco Annunziata is the chief economist at Unicredit Group. This is what he said: 'This is Shock and Awe, Part II and in 3-D. This is truly overwhelming force, and should be more than sufficient to stabilise markets in the near term, prevent panic and contain the risk of contagion.'

O Master, was Marco talking about the €750 billion rescue package for Europe?

O my child, you would be forgiven for thinking so, but he wasn't. Marco was talking, a little while ago, to me personally, not impersonally, about a vibrant mystical light that entered his head, swirled around, and shook his soul to its very foundations.

Does a soul have foundations?

You'd be surprised.

But he was talking about the markets being stabilized. This is concerning the rescue package, isn't it? Nothing to do with a vibrant mystical light.

You're mistaken. I don't know anything about the Eurozone. I'm not interested. Neither is Marco.

What has the vibrant mystical light got to do with preventing panic and containing the risk of contagion? What panic? What contagion? You've got this all wrong. You've totally misunderstood Mr Annunziata. Haven't you heard the news? The Eurozone's finance ministers have - look at this! Read it for yourself!

I'm not reading anything. There was a vibrant mystical light. It entered Marco. It will change everything for the better.

The Eurozone?


This is madness! Go back to Marco. Get him to explain it to you again.

I don't need anything explained to me, you little oik!

Oh, that's a new one. Little oik. Nice. This new blogging schedule of yours is not going to work out, you know. Not if you start cracking up and losing all touch with reality after only a few hours work. Read the Telegraph article. You'll have to rewrite this post.

I'm leaving it the way it is. I was the one who spoke to Marco.

And he spoke to the Telegraph as well, did he?

I don't know. I'm not his keeper.


Global Infrastructure Partners wants to raise $5-$6 billion for a new fund

Good luck. Yeah, good luck, Global Infrastructure Partners. You're going to need it. Why do I say that?

I'm not suggesting you won't get the money. You probably will. But I have just had a look at your website. The 'Our Team' section. Joseph Blum is a partner. I had no idea. Has long has he been with you?

This is what you say about him: 'Joe joined GIP from Latham & Watkins, where he was a partner and head of the London office's Project Development and Finance Group. He has extensive experience in representing sponsors and financial institutions in all aspects of cross-border project development and financings, as well as joint ventures and privatizations in the energy, transport and water sectors. Joe is a specialist in structuring complex project finance transactions involving multiple groups and types of credit providers.'

But that's not the whole story, is it?

I happen to know that Joe is a long-time associate of the world's most demonic financier. Yes, Global Infrastructure Partners, you know whom I'm referring to. The evil, evil, evil Mr Jack Pickles.

Oh no!

Yes! Obviously, Jack will get his grubby little hands on this money. O Global Infrastructure Partners, listen to me! You will not see any of this money. It does not matter how much you manage to raise. $5 billion? $6 billion? Go for $10 billion if you must. All of it will go into the burning pit and be reduced to ashes! That's what Jack does with money. It's not a burning like the burning you get with me. I am a shaman. The money burns forever. But Jack destroys the money. Oh, I guess he doesn't mean to. But it's his nature. He can only destroy. He is the destroyer of mystical love!

You must get rid of Joseph Blum. Pay him off. Say you haven't got any work for him. Put him on gardening leave. Bury him in the fucking garden! That's my advice. Just get rid of him! Or you will end up in the burning pit with your money. He'll drag you down. Down, down, down. Endless night! The pain with Joe. The terror with Jack. The demons with their baleful eyes. 'Baleful' is the only word for their eyes, believe me. And Satan. And the lot of you! Is that what you want?

Ned Pumphrey has joined Mayfair Capital Investment Management!

It had to happen sooner or later. There was no way he could have stayed. You see, Ned Pumphrey was bored with running the London office of the Deramore Property Group. It wasn't exciting enough for him. And Mayfair Capital wanted him, so he jumped ship. Now he can feel the blood running through his veins! And life has flavour at last!

Tell us all about it, baby!

Welcome to my life. I have been with the investment agency Weatherall Green & Smith. I have been with Nelson Bakewell. Thirteen years with Deramore. Twenty-four years of commercial property experience. But what good did it do me? All those wasted years! Not once did money burn within me. I never saw the ghosts of the dead financiers. Not once was I touched by the trunk of Ganesh. The desert wind never moved the sand for me. Talk about desolation! But times change. Ned changes. Forever changes. I have seen astral light. My eyes have been lit. Fire has come. I will chair Mayfair's internal investment committee. And I suppose that is the truth. The bland truth. But there is a greater truth above it. The committee is a state of mind. I can take it higher. This is a golden opportunity for me. James Thornton says I will add a new dimension to the investment team. If only he knew! Yes, I will add a new dimension. I will lift the committee up into the astral world, or take it inside - whatever. I must prove myself. I know Ganesh the elephant god is interested in me. I know Big Herb wants to see me develop. If I get this right, I will be able to write my own ticket. Will I be working with Catherine Candler? You bet I will! But will she be able to stop me pushing through my agenda? No, no, no! Because I am supported! Spiritually! Mystically! In my subconsciousnessness ness ness everything is beautiful. This is my moment. I'm up for it! The cosmos is up for it! What can go wrong?

Thank you, Ned.

I wish him the best of luck. I always get a kick out of this sort of thing. A cold earth wanderer turns his back on the cold earth. He embraces the astral plane. What's not to like?

I just hope James Thornton and Catherine Candler will be able to cope with the new Ned. I'm sure they had no idea that he would be coming to the firm with such ambitious plans, such wild enthusiasm, and such raging fire in his heart. I suspect they wanted the old Ned. The man with the twenty-four years of commercial property experience. Well, c'est la vie.

Timothy Geithner and 'shadow banking'

I have not written about the US treasury secretary Timothy Geithner before. But why not? He's a pretty important figure. Is it because I have a natural aversion to men called Timothy? Or am I just lazy?

Whatever the reason, I have not written about him. But that all changes today. It changes HERE! It changes NOW! There I am, over there, writing about him. Writing about Tim. I can see myself with the laptop.

I don't know all the details. Living the way I do, I rarely get a grip on the whole story. Most of the time, I am in a state of confusion. Half in a dream world, half in our (or your) so-called real world, floating between different realities. Visions of Gillian. Blood on the moon. Tears in the morning. You understand, don't you? All I know is that Timothy - if we must call him that - is concerned about 'shadow banking'.

O Master, what's with the '', man?

Timothy is concerned about shadow banking. He has got it in his head (there is a thought in his head) that shadow banking has not been regulated enough. Not enough rules. Oh, he wants more rules! But what is this 'shadow banking'? Is it all hedge funds, pension funds, and the like?

No, it's Jack Pickles, isn't it?

Yes. Jack Pickles. Jack does all his banking in the shadows on the lower levels of the astral plane. That is the real 'shadow banking'. That's what Timothy really wants to regulate.

O Master, he REALLY wants to regulate it. What chance has he got?

A snowball's chance on the lower levels.

That's a shame.

Actually, I don't think it is a shame. And let me tell you why. Mr Geithner - if we must call him that - would move up to the higher levels if he ever managed to settle Jack's hash. He would want to regulate Big Herb, Ganesh, the dead financiers, and yours truly. That's me, that is. I don't want no real 'cold' world mutha sticking his nose into my business. No one regulates me. No one regulates my friends or my associates. WE BURN BEYOND. No one can touch us.

So Jack is doing us a massive favour.

Yes, in a strange sort of way. Jack is drawing all the heat. And he'll be able to deal with the situation. 'Timothy' Geithner against Jack and his foul crew? No contest.

Jack will eat 'Tim' for breakfast!

Unless he goes there at dinner time.

Jack will eat Tim for dinner!

My advice to 'Mr' Geithner is that he leaves well alone. Stay away from the astral plane. Lower levels, higher levels - it makes no difference. He does not belong there. It's not his scene at all.

He's too square to burn!

And on the lowers levels he would be reduced to ashes. Say what you like about Jack, but he doesn't mess around when it comes to squares wandering on to his patch. Ashes!


O Mr Geithner '', are you reading this?


Forget about shadow banking. Forget about regulation. I know you don't want to be reduced to a pile of ashes. Leave well alone.

Ashes! Ashes! Ashes!

O my child, don't labour the point. He's got the picture.

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Procter & Gamble fat finger

I don't really know what's going on, but apparently there is some sort of fat finger on Wall Street that has caused mayhem with Procter & Gamble. I think.

Must be a very fat finger. Only Big Herb has a finger that fat.

Jimmy Cayne and the big, fat goose - and the werewolves!

O Master, what the fuck?!

Yeah. That's what I said. The former chief executive of Bear Stearns, Jimmy Cayne, told the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission in the US yesterday that the bank had been a 'big, fat goose walking down the lane, about to get eaten alive'. He also spoke of werewolves.

Werewolves. Jesus!

Yeah. Hedge fund werewolves.


I know. Jimmy has cracked up!

Has he really cracked up?

Well, he phoned me after his testimony. Judge for yourself: 'Mikey, they tore us apart! They ripped the flesh from our bones! Evil teeth! Red eyes! And not from lack of sleep. They were hedgies of the night, Michael. Beware the moon, lad. Or they will get you too. And stay away from me! It's in my blood now, the evil! Yes, I am a werewolf! If you see me, oh, don't let me bite you. Don't let me scratch you. You should get some garlic bread. For vampires, I know, but what harm will it do? Try Domino's. I will change my form. Mild-mannered banker becomes a beast! It's been known to happen. It happens to me - a hell of a lot. But worse things happen at sea, right? Like Nosferatu on that fucking boat! You must believe me. Has anyone got any silver bullets? Someone do me a favour. Put me out of my misery! I am capable of anything. Those bastard hedgies! When's the next full moon? I'll come to you, Mikey. I'll crawl on your rooftop. You'll be lying in bed. "What's that noise? What's that howling? That ain't no urban fox. That's Jimmy!" Then you'll be fucked! It will be far too late. I'll be at your throat! An American werewolf in London! You better get some mountain ash. Fuck the garlic bread! Get some mountain ash! Mikey, save yourself!'

Oh dear.

Spongetech: Michael Metter, Steven Moskowitz, Jack Halperin, Joel Pensley, and George Speranza

Someone has been pumping and dumping. It ain't me. I've got more class than that.

The SEC has got it in for sponge makers now. It's beyond belief. Sponge makers! Whatever next?!

Michael Metter has been charged. He’s the chief executive. Steven Moskowitz has been charged. He’s a senior executive. Jack Halperin and Joel Pensley have been charged. They were attorneys to the firm. And George Speranza has been charged. I have no idea who he is. Some kinda stock promoter. I don't know.

'The SEC alleges that Spongetech CEO Michael Metter and another senior executive, Steven Moskowitz, hyped fictional customers and grossly exaggerated sales figures through dozens of bogus press releases and fraudulent SEC filings to pump up demand for stock in Spongetech, a company that sells soap-filled sponges. After flooding the market with the false information to fraudulently inflate the stock price, Metter, Moskowitz, and Spongetech dumped approximately 2.5 billion shares by illegally selling them to the public through affiliated entities in unregistered transactions. They spent portions of their illicit profits in highly visible sponsorship deals with professional sports teams to further create the aura that Spongetech was a well-known and prosperous business.' More here.

Soap-filled sponges, eh?

It's the hyping fictional customers bit that interests me. I have it on very good authority that my dear friend Keith Busby likes a soap-filled sponge at bath time. The authority being Keith himself. And he often speaks about it. I believe he owns a Spongetech sponge. Now, is he a fictional customer? A lot of people are of the opinion that he is a fictional character. They think I just make shit up, that I don't have any real friends, so I invent twats like Keith. Well, come on! Think about it. If I were going to invent a friend, I wouldn't in a million years come up with someone like Keith. And what about Maurice? They say you can choose your friends. Well ...

Anyway, I suggest the SEC gets in touch with Keith. He'll wax lyrical about his sponge, and then I imagine the SEC will have to drop its charges against Metter and the gang.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Roberto Isolani has joined BTG Pactual

Has he?

Yes, he has. Roberto Isolani has joined BTG Pactual, and I don't blame him. It's a lovely little investment bank. BTG bought it from UBS, by the way.

Don't know much about it, myself. But I don't think it's that little. Big in Brazil, isn't it? Have you got any figures?

Have I got any what?

Have you got any figures?

O my child, I think you're in the wrong place. There are plenty of other financial websites if it's boring figures you want.

Only joking, man.

For fuck's sake! That's not how we roll on this blog.

O Master, so what's the mystical shit then?

I thought you would never ask. The mystical shit is basically Roberto floating in and out of my subconsciousnessness ness 24/7. That's what we're talking about.

You know him that well?!

Well, it's not through choice.

You mean he's just forced himself on you?

I wouldn't put it quite like that.

That's what it sounds like to me.

I'm not worried about it. It's no worse than you popping up every five minutes and whispering in my head.

I don't float though. In and out. That must be a nuisance.

You don't float? Whatever. But Roberto will get bored eventually. It's only a temporary thing, I'm sure.

You reckon?

Yes. I mean, I remember when I first mastered the art of astral projection. I was all over the City like a cheap suit.

And Big Herb had a word with you, didn't he?

Oh, you've heard about that? Yeah, as you know, in those days Big Herb was the money king, operating out of Scrutton Street, and he more or less told me to calm it down a bit.

Well, he did tell you.

Yes, he did.


Roberto will be all right. There's nothing to worry about.