Wall Street dawdling only gives opponents a push

August 12, 2016

Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley want till 2022 to offload investments banned by the Volcker Rule. They've already had six years to do so, a span when the stock market doubled. Even if the request has merits, it'll encourage harsher scrutiny and talk of more regulation.

Hillary Clinton’s 1 pct dilemma gets more awkward

July 26, 2016

Progressive Senators Sanders and Warren kicked off the Democratic convention blasting the rich. With inequality atop the party platform, they expect Clinton to rein in millionaires. They are her biggest donors, however, meaning she'll be forced to ignore them at her coronation.

Bloomberg gives Clinton big wet Wall Street kiss

By Rob Cox
July 25, 2016

The former Republican New York mayor, who considered an independent run for president, will endorse the Democratic nominee at the party's convention this week. Bloomberg's backing will play like an endorsement from the financial-industry plutocracy. Clinton could do without that.

Morgan Stanley growth plays 2016 version of Godot

April 18, 2016

The Wall Street firm’s $1.1 bln Q1 showing makes it unlikely CEO James Gorman will this year hit his 10 pct return on equity target. Even giving investors all the bank’s excess capital wouldn’t do the trick. Cost cuts might help, but higher earnings are taking forever to arrive.

John Gutfreund takes old Wall St model to grave

March 10, 2016

The ex-Salomon Brothers boss led investment banks from partnerships into prop trading – and ended up in a scandal. His era was, at least, one where bankers’ excesses didn’t put the system at risk. That lends his kind of risk taking a degree of perverse charm that will be missed.

Cox: Bloomberg’s White House hurdle is Wall Street

By Rob Cox
February 4, 2016

The media mogul mayor may yet try to be U.S. president. Hands down he’d be the richest contender ever. It would take extreme candidates Bernie Sanders and Ted Cruz as nominees for Michael Bloomberg to run. The bigger issue is that he’d have his deep ties to finance to explain.

Deutsche Bank risks its own “keep dancing” moment

January 28, 2016

Despite a rotten quarter in investment banking, Germany’s biggest lender will keep adding risk and rainmakers. CEO John Cryan is entitled to see fixed-income issues as cyclical. But in time his stance may echo ex-Citi boss Chuck Prince’s 2007 pledge to stay at the subprime ball.

Goldman and rivals’ pay cut may have bright side

January 20, 2016

Staff compensation at the Wall Street firm is 8 pct less on average than in 2014 and down almost 11 pct at Morgan Stanley. JPMorgan workers fared better but still took a hit. With share values way down, though, those paid in stock may get a great deal – barring another crash.

Too-big-to-fail cabal nursing $130 bln in damages

January 15, 2016

That’s the amount of market value swiped from the top six U.S. banks in the past two weeks. All but Wells Fargo now trade below book value. It’s not a reaction to lackluster fourth-quarter results, but a sign investors expect a year of pain. Whether they’re right is a toss-up.

Review: “Billions” delivers modest TV-time return

January 15, 2016

Wall Street finally gets a series for itself with an over-the-top clash between a hedge-fund boss and a federal prosecutor. Hard-to-depict high finance isn’t helped by hammy dialogue and storylines. It’s just enough fun, though, for a bros’ “Dynasty” meets “Desperate Housewives.”