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They Came, They Saw, They Got The Hell Out Of UBS In 7 Days

Tyler Durden's picture


Housing is recovering. The Fed has your back. The consumer is healthy. All things that would suggest the commercial-mortgage bond business should be on the cusp of a renaissance. So the question is - what did Brett Ersoff and John Herman see, seven short days after being promoted to run the UBS real-estate finance division, that made them depart the venerable Swiss firm with the paintball sized Stamford trading floor?

Via Bloomberg,

Brett Ersoff and John Herman, who took over the commercial-mortgage bond group at UBS AG (UBSN) last week after the group’s head departed for Bank of America Corp., have left the bank, said two people familiar with the moves who asked not to be identified because they haven’t been announced.


Ersoff and Herman were named co-heads of real-estate finance and mortgage-backed securities after Kenneth Cohen exited to become the global head of commercial real estate at Bank of America in New York, UBS confirmed on March 28.


Megan Stinson, a spokeswoman for Switzerland’s largest lender, said she couldn’t comment on the latest departures, reported earlier today by Debtwire. Ersoff and Herman couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.


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Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:15 | 3409844 ZerOhead
ZerOhead's picture

Tick tick tick...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:15 | 3409853 butchee
Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:19 | 3409866 localsavage
localsavage's picture

I guess that some guys just don't want to be left holding the bag

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:28 | 3409917 kaiserhoff
kaiserhoff's picture

Never send a ferret, to do a weasel's work.


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:32 | 3409943 JPM Hater001
JPM Hater001's picture

well said but who believes the storyline that BAC is doing great?  They are laying off people because...defaults are down?

Ill call it if no one else will...Bullshit.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:21 | 3410438 asscannon101
asscannon101's picture

Minor Freudian slip there, eh? I'm sure that you really meant to bellow, "Bullish!"

Fri, 04/05/2013 - 02:30 | 3411351 Handful of Dust
Handful of Dust's picture

"No comment."

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:47 | 3410188 Meme Iamfurst
Meme Iamfurst's picture




OOOOO......I have to remember that one.  Good show!!!


Actually, the mens room was shared.  Please, UBS is not Amertrade!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:16 | 3410079 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture


I guess that some guys just don't want to be left holding the bag

As the Dalek Supreme said:

"Set self-destruct on all instruments. We are abandoning! We are abandoning! We are abandoning! We are abandoning!"

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:22 | 3409883 kliguy38
kliguy38's picture

They got a good look the their future bonus ......a very appropriate length of rope

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:26 | 3410124 market le pew
Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:22 | 3409889 McMolotov
McMolotov's picture

It's like the scene in a horror movie where some pregnant woman gets an ultrasound and the technician runs out of the room screaming.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:56 | 3410031 MarkD
MarkD's picture

Oh, that was frickin good MM.... although cheap vodka burns when shooting from my nostrils

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:48 | 3410526 Yamaha
Yamaha's picture

Correct Mc.......The entire operation is a horror movie.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:15 | 3409848 cossack55
cossack55's picture

.......wait for it.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:15 | 3409851 Stoploss
Stoploss's picture

Well, now we know who's sitting on all the shit..

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:26 | 3410453 asscannon101
asscannon101's picture

Well, maybe not ALL the shit... But a significantly feculent, nostril-scorching LAKE of it that a mad dash in any direction was deemed better than  than trying to dodge the fusilade of peanuts and corn that was bound to erupt once it heated to boiling point. And that would appear to be SOON, if their alacrity in departure could be viewed as any indication.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:15 | 3409852 Quinvarius
Quinvarius's picture

I guess compliance would not approve him shorting his own bank.  So he left.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:45 | 3409994 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

Only two problems with the theory

- There's no such thing as compliance anymore

- Nobody inside the industry would short a bank, without explicit inside knowledge that said bank was going to be the sacrificial lamb (eg ala Bear Stearns or Lehman) as they all know that the general rule is that there's no downside risk to banking anymore (with the exception of 'retail banking' of course).

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:33 | 3410315 NoClueSneaker
NoClueSneaker's picture

Plz, Mr. Insider , let it be Douche Bank for a start ...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:18 | 3409857 Vashta Nerada
Vashta Nerada's picture

Brett Ersoff and John Herman, who took over the commercial-mortgage bond group at UBS AG (UBSN) last week after the group’s head departed for Bank of America Corp., have left the bank


It's like 10 pm over there.  It is about time they went home for the day.

Oh, never mind.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:17 | 3409858 ghandi
ghandi's picture

Its a killer rabbit!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:25 | 3409910 McMolotov
McMolotov's picture

Quick! Get the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 21:07 | 3410569 jon dough
jon dough's picture


(Three, sir...)


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:38 | 3409960 booboo
booboo's picture

More like they walked in, seen the Trojan Bunny stuffed with smoldering toxic paper  and hauled ass. Probably hunkeered down at a Motel 8 in Nebraska and registered under the names of Cletus and Earl Penamore

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:40 | 3410490 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

Their best bet is to marry each other ASAP so they cannot be compelled to testify against each other.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:17 | 3409862 Wile-E-Coyote
Wile-E-Coyote's picture

They looked at the books and said "Ohh Shit"

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:48 | 3410348 cynicalskeptic
cynicalskeptic's picture

UBS was still writing credit defaut swaps on mortgage garbage even as the whole mess was collapsing....... hell these are the fools that bought Paine Webber.  

so much for the Swiss being financial geniuses.  I can't imagine the shit these guys are sitting on.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:12 | 3410415 NoDebt
NoDebt's picture

Hmmmmmm........ I wonder if there's more to it than that.  You would think they would have had a bit more foresight than that.

I wonder if somebody from "executive management" didn't come down and have a little talk with them.  "Here's what you boys are gonna do about this....."  They blink a few times, look at eachother, excuse themselves to go to the bathroom and use the fire escape to exit the building.  Later that day they email in their resignations.


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:18 | 3409863 ebworthen
ebworthen's picture

"Oh my God!  If we don't bail NOW they will blame it all on us!  There is nothing there!  Let Cohen take the rap, it's his toxic pile of shit anyway!"


"My eyes are watering and I'm choking from just looking at those toxic balance sheets!"


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 21:11 | 3410581 Theosebes Goodfellow
Theosebes Goodfellow's picture

I'll bet you dimes to donuts ebworthen, you are closer to the truth than you know. The question becomes who does UBS try to stick it with next and what do those clowns do?

I can't think of anything that says "Houston, we have a problem.", like this does. I would tend to think this will draw ... unwanted attention to their operations.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:17 | 3409865 DawgAss
DawgAss's picture

There may be some without blinders that don't want to be on the short end of a long rope!

We can only hope there is enough rope when it comes time!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:18 | 3409867 Carl Spackler
Carl Spackler's picture

I smell a Consent Order coming.

Look.  There.  Over the horizon.  Is that the Fed coming?

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:20 | 3409876 suteibu
suteibu's picture

Congratulations!  You are the new captain! the way...the ship is sinking.  Carry on.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:38 | 3409953 Leto II
Leto II's picture

hahahaha...the beatings will continue untill morale improves

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:51 | 3410357 cynicalskeptic
cynicalskeptic's picture

but that's not all ........not only is the ship sinking, the only lifeboat was taken by the previous captain and first mate,  and the cargo reacts violently and explosively with seawater

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:21 | 3409879 agent default
agent default's picture

Call me paranoid, stupid, retarded, troll whatever you want, but:  If there is one thing that can make a Cyprus out of Switzerland it is UBS.  Fuck the leaks, this is the thing to worry about.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:49 | 3410002 Urban Redneck
Urban Redneck's picture

There is a name for the phenomenon in Switzerland - Too Big To Save

The SNB accepted some crap on trade from the Swiss parent, but the bastard-stepchild that was PaineWebber is the responsibility of Uncle Ben and the US taxpayer.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:53 | 3410359 agent default
agent default's picture

You mean the US can detonate UBS at a whim?  Explains the Swiss government caving in to Us demands.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:21 | 3409884 ziggy59
ziggy59's picture

They read between the letters..

Ultra BS

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:22 | 3409886 Miles Kendig
Miles Kendig's picture

BAC sure knows where to find the gems to fill its top ranks

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:25 | 3409893 knukles
knukles's picture

They uh...
The ah...
Look, we'd just repainted the offices and weren't gonna do it over again just for these guys and told them so before they got here.
Spoilt brats
Its transitory.
Yes, the raw unseasonally adjusted drop in co-heads of whatever.
But seasonally adjusted, we added 15 guys.
Here's out new mascot.
Ms UBS Uberleatherbitchpainskle
You like that leather zoom zoom?
We knew you would. 
She'll be chaining you to your seat for the remainder of your enjoyable time with us whilst paying your mortgage.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:24 | 3409900 ammainol
ammainol's picture

Both had been with UBS since 2011 but were promoted when Cohen left for BAML...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:45 | 3409907 ToNYC
ToNYC's picture

They went off to kill the Great White UBS-book Whale; nice move Ahabs!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:26 | 3409914 Joebloinvestor
Joebloinvestor's picture

They suddenly realized they were gonna be,"John Doe #1 and #2".



Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:32 | 3409920 Whoa Dammit
Whoa Dammit's picture

Plant Bowen (coal fired) Southern Compnay Power Plant just blew up in Bartow County GA. It is the largest coalfired plant in North America & connects to the entire SE grid.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:36 | 3409950 smlbizman
smlbizman's picture

that is why mr. obama is trying to get rid of dangerous....we need something safer like those nuclear plants the japs have...or even an exxon power plant fueled  directly from their pipelines....

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:54 | 3410022 Whoa Dammit
Whoa Dammit's picture

Local radio is reporting that the tubine generator exploded and that there is major structural damage to the plant.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 22:36 | 3410860 brettd
brettd's picture

Short GE/Siemmons.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:00 | 3410380 Diogenes
Diogenes's picture

Yeah that's what we need. More nuclear power plants in Georgia run by the same Bubbas that blew up the coal fired one.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:16 | 3410084 RockyRacoon
RockyRacoon's picture

Same link:

UPDATE:  WYXC-AM radio reporter John Underwood told FOX 5 that the explosion took place in the power house of plant #1.  The plant's manager, Tim Banks, was said to be in Atlanta but is heading back to the plant now.

Residents in the area reported their homes shaking and loud noises. A large amount of smoke was in the area, they said.

Euharlee City Manager Trish Sullivan said it is a frightening, scary day for the city. She classified the explosion as "large."

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:29 | 3409925 buzzsaw99
buzzsaw99's picture

when assets look like liabilities and liabilities start to look like assets it is well past time to get the flock out of dodge.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:32 | 3409940 Tony Rumjog
Tony Rumjog's picture

I will bet they both got nice exit packages to keep their mouths shut. UBS mark-to-fantasy may be too much even for the well compensated.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:37 | 3409951 fijisailor
fijisailor's picture

Wells Fargo online has been dead all day.  If they remain dead tomorow I will clean out the rest of my deposits.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:37 | 3409954 hannah
hannah's picture

somehow i kept imaging ersoft/herman as cheech and chong showing up for work using all the mortgage paperwork to roll joints.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:37 | 3409961 Bennie Noakes
Bennie Noakes's picture

They should have only made one of them the head. If there is only one head, he can deny all knowledge of what was happening and blame it on underlings (a la Corzine). But with co-heads, you never know whether your opposite number might be forced to give you up in a plea deal.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:51 | 3410006 you enjoy myself
you enjoy myself's picture

good point.   they must have looked at the balance sheet and then reacted the same way Bluto and D-Day did to the dead horse in Dean Wormer's office.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:38 | 3409962 pashley1411
pashley1411's picture

At what point can we definatively conclude that, if you are still taking a payroll check from a bank, you are guilty as charged?

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:07 | 3410400 Fred Hayek
Fred Hayek's picture

See that speck in your rear view mirror? That was the point back there.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:39 | 3409964 youngman
youngman's picture

Must of been the bad coffee...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:40 | 3409969 GubbermintWorker
GubbermintWorker's picture

Annnnnnnnd,'s gone!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:42 | 3409977 Downtoolong
Downtoolong's picture

They found a trade slip for a $20 billion swap between BofA and UBS in Kenneth Cohen’s old desk along with a copy of a self help book, “So You’re About To Become A Rogue Trader”.  

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:49 | 3409997 Zola
Zola's picture

They know the next step is " GUILLOTINE"

Ps: Alternative is they saw a book full of junk and didn't want their "track record" to be impacted by the rubbish ?

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 17:52 | 3410009 Darkside
Darkside's picture

They went in took a look at the books, surmised no bonus, no turnaround and no glory only hell called their lawyer about their contract and left. 

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:02 | 3410041 100pcDredge
100pcDredge's picture

Back to the forest! Run! Quickly!

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:09 | 3410060 Yellowhoard
Yellowhoard's picture

In Switzerland, bank executives are held personally liable for fraud and what not.

I'm surprised it took them a week to leave.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:48 | 3410189 Tenshin Headache
Tenshin Headache's picture

That would be a nice piece of legislation for some politically ambitious type to sponsor, or even a campaign platform. The weight of public opinion would come down strongly in favor of personal liability for bank fraud - particularly by the 2014 mid-term election when the full extent of the fraud has become all too apparent.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:19 | 3410093 jonjon831983
jonjon831983's picture

This fits in nicely: "Obama administration pushes banks to make home loans to people with weaker credit"


I wonder if those two had a nice clause in their contracts giving them a sweet bonus if they left.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:23 | 3410114 Spigot
Spigot's picture

What is interesting is that they both left at the same time, after a week in the new jobs. Rats --> exit stage left. This is all starting to look like fire in the hold...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:30 | 3410469 stock trout
stock trout's picture

We are all reading too much into this. They both just wanted to simultaneously spend more time with their families. 

Fri, 04/05/2013 - 01:21 | 3411232 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

They married a coupla twin sisters...

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:25 | 3410120 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

Bank of America has got a shit load of trouble on the horizon.

If you have access, start digging around the court cases against them in Maryland.

What were presented as home loan modifications to Hispanic customers were really rental agreements. Some homeowners are winning and getting their homes either free and clear or at vastly reduced totals.

Tick tock fuckers.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:59 | 3410555 lotsoffun
lotsoffun's picture

lawsuits are peanuts.  bac has nothing to worry about there.  lawsuits are tiny slaps that amount to maybe a small percent of the profit made.  you are deluding yourself hoping that there is some benevolent sort of santa claus handing out justice to the banks.  keep dreaming.  read up on corzine and his pal gary gensler at the ctfc.  for starters.


Fri, 04/05/2013 - 03:28 | 3411393 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

For the moment, the lawsuits are minor trashcan fires in their offices. Perhaps I'm dreaming, but if enough of those flare up at the same time, they'll melt the steel girders and the whole building will collapse.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 21:07 | 3410575 W74
W74's picture

Hey Polack.  Are you living in Maryland?

Fri, 04/05/2013 - 03:21 | 3411388 Jendrzejczyk
Jendrzejczyk's picture

Nope, I'm slowly dying here.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:41 | 3410164 you enjoy myself
you enjoy myself's picture

btw, this is Bloomberg on Cohen's departure:

Kenneth Cohen, the head of commercial real estate finance at UBS AG (UBSN), is leaving to join Bank of America Corp. (BAC) after Switzerland’s largest lender overhauled its compensation rules to limit risk......Cohen, who arrived at UBS less than two years ago and previously oversaw commercial mortgage-backed securities at Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.

so let me get this straight.  Cohen created a CMBS timebomb at Lehman.  goes to UBS and likely does the same thing.  UBS gets wise to his risk and changes their compensation formulas, likely by lengthening the window used to calculate the perfomance of his bets (and hence his bonus).  Cohen knows he's levered to the gills for short term profits that at some point will blow up, so he leaves for BAC.  Ersoff and Herman come in and are so freaked out by the portfolio that Cohen's built, that they both quit in a week. 

and nothing will ever happen to Cohen.


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:57 | 3410548 lotsoffun
lotsoffun's picture

yup.  and montag knows these guys are cowboys that will package up and sell anything to anybody's grandmother with a straight face, and if they don't get out in time, bennie will buy the crap from them at wherever they mark it.

nice job!!


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 21:06 | 3410566 W74
W74's picture

...and nothing will ever happen to [insert jew here].

Oh except for Madoff, but he wasn't a team player, so under the bus he went.  Usually they just try to blame it on the Indian guys.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:45 | 3410179 Quantum Nucleonics
Quantum Nucleonics's picture

Not to spoil the fun and be less cynical, but isn't it likely they departed UBS to go work with their former boss at BofA?  You'd think they got a better payday at a TBTF US bank than a Euro trash bank whose pay is set it Brussels.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 18:54 | 3410214 Cacete de Ouro
Cacete de Ouro's picture

Today, in an unprecedented departure, two ubs (no caps) baby executivos and all round cowards, Brett I'm-off and John He's-ur-Man, stunned Zurich HQ head-honchos by exiting stage left before the curtain had even opened.

UBS Chairman, and former SNB forklift driver, Wolfgang "I know real mis-spelt gold certificates from the Black Eagle Trust when I see them" Sluckenhammer said, "In my day we stuck around until the ink dried, but not anymore. These assholes need to learn a lesson, and that lesson is that the UBS doesn't take kindly to bad publicity".

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:19 | 3410283 davepowers
davepowers's picture

leave us never forget that UBS is where Phil Gramm ended up after finishing hosing the US of A in the Senate

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 19:27 | 3410292 virgilcaine
virgilcaine's picture


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:08 | 3410399 Decimus Lunius ...
Decimus Lunius Luvenalis's picture

With BAC options no doubt.

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:38 | 3410488 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

"Mr. Ersoff can you tell us why you left your new position after such a short time?"

"Can't talk. Digging bunker. Go way."

Thu, 04/04/2013 - 20:50 | 3410529 Westcoastliberal
Westcoastliberal's picture


Thu, 04/04/2013 - 21:38 | 3410657 dolph9
dolph9's picture

At my last job after 1 month I knew I was getting out, but I still worked for a year.

Why?  Because I'm not a banker and there's no revolving door for me.  I'm just another Amerikan slave.

Tue, 04/09/2013 - 21:47 | 3429323 kchrisc
kchrisc's picture

Incredible. These two scumbags, who HAVE probably sold their mother to get where they are, saw and heard enough in 7 days that they left, departed, quit.

It´s like a horror movie that has the wild animals running scared from the forest, you don´t want to know what lies deeper in.         hujel

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