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Morgan Stanley Launches Structured Credit Outfit

Morgan Stanley has hired Frank Iacono from Lehman Brothers to lead its newly launched Cournot Capital, a principal investment affiliate that will target structured credit, according to an official.

Morgan Stanley has hired Frank Iacono from Lehman Brothers to lead its newly launched Cournot Capital, a principal investment affiliate that will target structured credit, according to an official.

The specific investment criteria for the business could not be determined, but market participants noted the business will source internal assets for repackaging, similar to Deutsche Bank's Winchester Capital Principal Finance, and a newly launched effort by ABN AMRO. Cournot is named after 19th century French economist, Augustin Cournot, who was responsible for a bulk of modern game theory. Iacono and other officials at Morgan Stanley declined comment.

Iacono, who is Cournot's ceo, was reportedly working on a credit derivative product company at Lehman, in conjunction with Evanston, Ill.-based fund Magnetar Capital. That effort has now been abandoned. Lehman officials did not comment by press time. Magnetar, however, is understood to have enlisted other sponsors to launch a CDPC. Officials at Magnetar did not return calls by press time.

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