American International Group

America's "Largest Minority-Owned And Operated Investment Bank" Shuts Down

Solyndra, Ener1, and now Kaufman Bros - The current economy may not be very good at creating jobs, even minority-focused ones, but its track record in inverse job creation is rapidly becoming second to none. Bloomberg reports that "Kaufman Bros. LP, the minority-owned investment bank that helped unwind U.S. stakes in bailed-out financial companies, ceased operations as of yesterday, according to a notice posted on its website. Chief Executive Officer Benny Lorenzo told employees that New York-based Kaufman was closing immediately in a meeting yesterday after trading closed, according to two people with knowledge of the matter, who declined to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. Neither Lorenzo nor Chief Financial Officer Gerard Durkin returned messages left on their office and mobile phones yesterday and today." More amusing is the following description: "The company, which also has offices in San Francisco, said it was sought out by institutional investors, hedge funds and government agencies to help meet diversity goals." No comment. The closure notice can be found on the company's website. And so another bank bites the dust. Many more coming.

Frontrunning: January 20

  • Fed Holds Off for Now on Bond Buys  (Hilsenrath)
  • Bonds Show Return of Crisis Once ECB Loans Expire (Bloomberg)
  • Greek Debt Talks Enter Third Day After ‘Substantial’ Discussions (Bloomberg)
  • Sharp clashes at Republican debate ahead of vote (Reuters)
  • Lagarde Joins Warning on Fiscal Cuts Before Davos (Bloomberg)
  • Investors exit big-name funds as stars fail to shine (Reuters)
  • Payday lenders plead case to consumer agency (Reuters) - the EFSF included?
  • EU Toughens Fiscal Pact Bowing to ECB Objections, Draft Shows (Bloomberg)
  • Minister Urges Japan to Use Strong Yen (FT)
  • China Eyes Pension Fund Boost for Stock Market (Reuters)
  • China Manufacturing Contraction Boosts Case for Easing: Economy (Bloomberg)

Chris Whalen On The Zombie IPO: Is American International Group the "Blood Doll" of Wall Street?

In this issue of The Institutional Risk Analyst, we return to the zombie dance party to check in on the queen of the prom, American International Group ("AIG"). First a question: Vampires are all the rage now in popular culture, so allow us to offer a macabre metaphor for AIG. Do you know what a "blood doll" is? A girl who craves to be the regular victim of or willing donor to a vampire. But hold that thought.