How Not to Run an S.E.C. Investigation

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description: A recent report by Securities and Exchange Commission’s inspector general shows that the investigation of Bernard L. Madoff was not the only one to go badly awry. While the impact of the S.E.C.’s missteps were not nearly as significant as in the Madoff case, the report shows that the agency’s enforcement division allowed itself… Read more »

Why a $14/hour employee costs $20

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators, Management Issues.

Description: You probably cost your boss a lot more than you think you do. Source:  CNNMoney.com Date: 03/26/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/2010/03/26/smallbusiness/employee_costs/index.htm Questions for discussion: In general, do you think these taxes (costs) are fair to employers and employees? Why would any exemptions for employment taxes be considered an unfair competitive subsidy by other businesses who must… Read more »

Dodd calls for Lehman Bros. investigation

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Governments & Regulators, Management Issues.

Description:  A year and a half after Lehman Brothers’ collapse, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Conn., is calling for a federal investigation into the “Lehman situation” and other companies that may have fudged their balance sheets, contributing to the financial crisis. Source: CNNMoney.com   Date: 03/20/2010  Link: http://money.cnn.com/2010/03/19/news/economy/lehman_brothers_chris_dodd/index.htm Questions for discussion: Do you believe… Read more »

At Lehman, Watchdogs Saw It All

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description: Almost two years ago to the day, a team of officials from the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Reserve Bank of New York quietly moved into the headquarters of Lehman Brothers. They were provided desks, phones, computers — and access to all of Lehman’s books and records. At any given moment, there… Read more »

Lehman’s $642 million bankruptcy

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Governments & Regulators, Management Issues.

Description:  Councils, advisors, consultants, even an art auctioneer get hefty compensation for cleaning up the firm’s books. Source: CNNMoney.com – video report   Date: 03/12/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/video/fortune/2010/03/12/f_sl_lehman_fees.fortune/ Questions for discussion: Summarize the possible claims against Lehman. Explain why criminal proceedings against individuals or organizations might be in order? Explain the lessons learned by the failure… Read more »

$642 million to clean up Lehman — and counting

Posted by & filed under Company Analysis, Governments & Regulators, Management Issues.

Description:  Unraveling the biggest-ever U.S. bankruptcy case isn’t cheap. A report released Thursday by the examiner in the Lehman Brothers Chapter 11 case exposed the games the defunct investment bank’s executives played to stay in Wall Street’s good graces Source: CNNMoney.com   Date: 03/12/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/2010/03/12/news/companies/lehman.fees.fortune/?section=magazines_fortune Questions for discussion: How does the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which… Read more »

China may allow yuan to rise by mid-April, strategists say

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis, Governments & Regulators.

Description:  China could allow its currency to begin appreciating against the U.S. dollar within the next month, as Beijing responds to growing pressure from Washington to allow its currency to trade more freely, according to analysts. Source: Marketwatch.com   Date: 03/12/2010 Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/china-may-let-yuan-rise-next-month-2010-03-12?siteid=nwtwk Questions for discussion: Summarize the reasons one can expect a rise in… Read more »

SEC explains dangerous derivatives

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description:  Director of the SEC’s division of Risk, Strategy, and Financial Innovation Henry Hu maps out how credit default swaps work. Source: CNNMoney.com – video report   Date: 03/05/2010 Link: http://money.cnn.com/video/markets/2010/03/04/mkts_ss_sec_white_board.cnnmoney/ Questions for discussion: Summarize the financial arrangements between banks, companies, and investors that define credit default swaps.  What is the problem, if any? Should… Read more »

Greece on the Brink: Anatomy of a Debt Crisis

Posted by & filed under Economic Analysis, Governments & Regulators.

Description:  A wakeup call for Greece and the euro. WSJ’s Andy Jordan and Joe Parkinson report from Athens on the threat of a potentially contagious debt crisis and the moral hazard of bailing out a country with bad fiscal habits. Source: Marketwatch – video report   Date: 03/02/2010 Link: http://www.marketwatch.com/video/asset/greece-on-the-brink-anatomy-of-a-debt-crisis/5AEAD5AC-6C7E-424C-BF51-FA0A40B350C9  Questions for discussion: What is… Read more »

A plan to save commercial real estate

Posted by & filed under Governments & Regulators.

Description:  Economists have long been predicting commercial real estate could be the next day of reckoning for the financial markets, with a wave of defaults looming as billions of dollars in troubled loans come due in the coming months. But a little-noticed bill introduced in January could help bring a new source of desperately-needed liquidity… Read more »