Comment - All Articles

  • Euroblog 1089

    • 30 Jan 2009
  • Leak Table 1089

    • 30 Jan 2009
  • Loan Ranger 1089

    • 30 Jan 2009
  • SOUTHPAW: BofA starts fightback, targets JPM’s top spot

    John Thain may have made enemies during his short tenure at the top of Merrill Lynch — but not among the firm’s investment bankers. Managing directors at the bank’s European headquarters in London expressed anger this week at Thain’s ousting, and were united in their belief that Ken Lewis knifed Thain in order to save his own credibility.

    • 30 Jan 2009
  • Attention deficit

    • 30 Jan 2009
  • Plus ça change…

    • 29 Jan 2009
  • Raters get tough with Ineos

    Some investors holding troubled chemical firm Ineos’ loans are said to be upset at the double-notch ratings downgrade the company has received over the last couple of days. But even if the action looks tough on a company trying to work through its problems, the agencies are still being more lenient than the market itself.

    • 27 Jan 2009
  • Summers under scrutiny

    Lawrence Summers, president Obama’s top economic adviser, will wield unprecedented power in the new administration. But his track record suggests a tricky balancing act ahead, especially as far as the international economy is concerned.

    • 27 Jan 2009
  • Cash box critics need to recognise reality

    Allowing companies to bend the rules in order to quickly raise relatively small amounts of equity capital should be recognised for what it is: a sensible solution to a disjointed market.

    • 27 Jan 2009
  • If it ain’t broke, please Merv, don’t try and fix it

    The Bank of England’s plan to provide liquidity and bring down spreads by buying corporate bonds appears as an oddly-targeted initiative to help a sector which is already finding its feet. Its artificial intervention may actually damage the long-term health of the market.

    • 27 Jan 2009
  • Cracks show in peripheral guarantees

    Government guarantees have been a lifeline for banks across Europe. Without them, some financial institutions probably would not have even dreamt of trying to raise money in the bond market. However, while they are clearly here to stay, the recent spate of rating actions on sovereigns in Europe highlights that even a guarantor can have its shortcomings.

    • 27 Jan 2009
  • SOUTHPAW: Bankers blinded by the lure of long-term wealth

    As investment banks struggle with the latest phase of the financial crisis many are increasingly seeking solace from the wealthy clients and family offices served by their private banking and asset management operations as a way of generating high-margin, low-cost returns. The strategy has merit, but it requires the sort of long-term commitment that may be beyond the attention span of a typical deal-maker, writes David Rothnie.

    • 23 Jan 2009
  • Loan Ranger 1088

    • 23 Jan 2009
  • Not like on the telly

    • 23 Jan 2009
  • Leak Table 1088

    • 23 Jan 2009
  • Euroblog 1088

    • 23 Jan 2009
  • A Happy New Year?

    • 22 Jan 2009
  • EuroWeek view: RBS should still be proud to be global

    UK taxpayers and the politicians that represent them have many good reasons to be angry at the management of the Royal Bank of Scotland — now that they control a majority of the bank, the extent of RBS’s losses affects them too. But nationalistic carping at the bank’s global lending businesses is a travesty of the truth.

    • 21 Jan 2009
  • EuroWeek view: RBS should still be proud to be global

    UK taxpayers and the politicians that represent them have many good reasons to be angry at the management of the Royal Bank of Scotland — now that they control a majority of the bank, the extent of RBS’s losses affects them too. But nationalistic carping at the bank’s global lending businesses is a travesty of the truth.

    • 21 Jan 2009
  • Feeding the beast

    The UK government’s new bank lending plan signals a change of tack in its approach to the financial crisis, but beware the appetite of the beast.

    • 20 Jan 2009
  • RBS should still be proud to be global

    UK taxpayers and the politicians that represent them have many good reasons to be angry at the management of the Royal Bank of Scotland — now that they control a majority of the bank, the extent of RBS’s losses affects them too. But nationalistic carping at the bank’s global lending businesses is a travesty of the truth.

    • 20 Jan 2009
  • Risk takers to the rescue

    Safe. Solid. Secure. It must be the Swiss franc bond market. But yields falling to levels unappealing even to some, at least, of the most conservative money managers on the planet are threatening to shake up that sedate world, and, in a positive model for the wider capital markets, encourage investors to start buying riskier credits.

    • 20 Jan 2009
  • MTN Leak 1087

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • One for the road

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • Regulatory silence deafens amid callable capital dispute

    The debate over whether Deutsche Bank should have called its lower tier two bond at the first opportunity is refusing to die down with more fuel added to the fire this week when HBOS announced that it would call an upcoming deal of its own. Investors are still in inflammatory mood but tempers could be cooled if only bank regulators would stand up and publicly support issuers.

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • Loan Ranger 1087

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • SOUTHPAW: Will Orcel be the next Merrill star to leave Ken’s house of fun?

    For many of Merrill Lynch’s European investment banking team at its London headquarters, the apparent rescue by Bank of America last September has turned out to be nothing more than a stay of execution.

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • Euroblog 1087

    • 16 Jan 2009
  • The party’s over

    • 15 Jan 2009
  • Dollar concerns prompt China’s Christmas surprise

    It was on Christmas Eve that China chose to launch what appeared to be a simple new trade scheme to start using renminbi, rather than US dollars or euros, in deals with eight neighbouring economies. Worries about both dollar volatility for exporters and the impact of a dollar slump on the country’s $2tr foreign currency holdings presumably led to the announcement being pitched softly over Christmas for fear of what it might do to the US currency.

    • 13 Jan 2009
  • Regulatory silence deafens amid callable capital dispute

    The debate over whether Deutsche Bank should have called its lower tier two bond at the first opportunity is refusing to die down with more fuel added to the fire this week when HBOS announced that it would call an upcoming deal of its own. Investors are still in inflammatory mood but tempers could be cooled if only bank regulators would stand up and publicly support issuers.

    • 13 Jan 2009
  • Corporate bond medicine is working

    The corporate bond market looked like one of the worst casualties of 2008’s turmoil. Its vital signs were weak, its pulse was fading and only a prescription of generous spreads and a course of utilities transactions helped the sector recover in the final weeks of the year. But it’s not time for the patient to jump out of bed and start flirting with the nurses — the all-clear is a long way off yet.

    • 13 Jan 2009
  • Depression ahead? Debt capital markets are there already

    Depression hit the debt capital markets in no small way last year as the final volume tallies show. Moods have been lifted by a sprightly first week of January but trouble could lie just around the corner, starting with a scary couple of weeks as the fourth quarter bank results season begins.

    • 13 Jan 2009
  • Wise-up or wave goodbye

    The quartet of emerging markets sovereign bonds that priced in the first week of the year clearly showed how much cash investors have to put to work. Just as clearly, they show the importance of clever marketing and execution.

    • 13 Jan 2009
  • Off piste

    • 09 Jan 2009
  • Euroblog 1086

    • 09 Jan 2009
  • SOUTHPAW: Trust me, I’m a restructurer

    Dubai was last year’s bolt-hole for investment bankers seeking to avoid the axe. This year, savvy but deal-less dealmakers are rebranding as restructuring experts. The ride will be a bumpy one as big banks run into even bigger conflicts, although there will be no shortage of business to be done, writes David Rothnie.

    • 09 Jan 2009
  • Loan Ranger

    • 09 Jan 2009
  • MTN Leak 1086

    • 09 Jan 2009
  • A solid start

    • 08 Jan 2009
  • Bankers: control crunch myths quickly or face Kristallnacht

    The popular narrative of the credit crunch has it thus: bankers have destroyed livelihoods with reckless under-regulated casino capitalism based on fiat money which didn’t really exist. Already sounds like orthodoxy? Certainly, it is unquestioningly embedded into mainstream news and comment. It may also be partly true but it is also full of dangerous presumptions — the banking industry needs to do more than mumble the odd apology, it needs to tackle some pernicious cankers of ideas and communicate its case.

    • 06 Jan 2009
  • Governments: stop lecturing and take responsibility

    The UK and other governments have been haranguing banks for not pouring their bail-out funds back into the economy. But for the banks concerned it would be reckless to do so. It’s time for governments to put up or shut up.

    • 06 Jan 2009
  • The latest Russian gas dispute: not just a load of hot air

    Russia and Ukraine are squabbling again over gas prices. While Russia might have a point — and now actually needs the money to boot — neither country is doing much for its chances of slowing capital flight and its ability to bounce back from the credit crunch.

    • 06 Jan 2009