Summit Notebook

Exclusive outtakes from industry leaders

from Blogs Dashboard:

Wealth education: one pretention too much?

The ultra wealthy have finally found something that is too pretentious.

 

English-style horseback riding lessons? Fine. Summers split between five different country houses? Also fine. 

 

But, how about enforced wealth education for the next generation? As in, teaching the kids how different types of investments actually work and how to enjoy the family fortune without instantly frittering it away? Now that smacks of pretension, especially for the kids, who are used to spending the 'rents riches without having to think too hard about the dirty green stuff itself.

 

“Wealth education for my kids? Well that seems pretty pretentious,” said Wells Fargo Family Wealth managing director of family dynamics Keith Whitaker, describing the feelings of some of his ultra-rich clients at the Reuters Global Wealth Management Summit in Boston.

 

“There’s still that inner feeling ‘Am I doing something that’s pretentious? Is this somehow elitist of me?’”

No-frills travel is on for private bankers

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The days of luxury VIP lounges are gone for many private bankers, as the crisis forces them to travel economy to save money.

Thrift has become the new mantra for private banks and, like with many other industry segments already, getting out of the office is allowed only if there are clients to meet.

Private banking: you may be worth it

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Those who tend to avoid posh restaurants in Geneva’s expensive Rue du Rhone district and famed private banks because they believe they are not rich enough may be given a second chance at century-old wealth manager Julius Baer.

The Swiss private bank, which has made its name thanks to the services it offers to the ultra-rich, believe its powerful high-end brand may be keeping potential clients away.

Geneva is for wealth management

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Even for an American who’s not wealthy, Geneva has a reputation as a global centre for wealth management – the place the world’s rich come to stash their money and (they hope) make it grow.

    But you don’t necessarily expect it to be so aggressive — after all, the rich tend to be demure when it comes to their banking.

Politicians get into restructuring

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It’s a different kind of restructuring business these days, with politicians picking up the phone to try to put their two cents in too, Moelis & Co.’s Thane Carlston said during the Reuters Restructuring Summit.

“I don’t think there have ever been more calls placed on behalf of companies by governors, senators and congressman. And it does have an impact and it’s not just in the auto industry.”

Restructuring calls heat up

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After a cool few months, the phones are heating up again for restructuring advisors. 

Michael Kramer, head of restructuring at Perella Weinberg Partners, told the Reuters Restructuring Summit that the calls he gets from possible clients aren’t quite as panicked as early this year. 

from LEGACY Reuters Summits:

More sovereign bond issues, more challenging for corporates?

Analysts say the worst of the financial crisis that hit Eastern Europe especially hard has passed but new euro bond and sovereign bond issues could make it challenging for corporations looking to tap the capital markets. Cheuvreux's Simon Quijano-Evans explains why.

Impact of new sovereign bond issues from Reuters TV on Vimeo.

“Rich, retired and gone”

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Veteran insolvency expert Nick Hood gave the restructuring summit a sobering reminder of the shortcomings of corporate finance.

“Every time we have a recession I sit down with the head of workout for bank clients and ask what banks are going to learn,” said Hood, who first qualified as an accountant in 1970.

Debt collecting gets…er, sexy?

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Bank employees working in call centers and reminding clients of their overdue loans used to be as far to the bottom of the banking food chain as you could be. Not any more.

Raiffeisen International, the second-biggest lender in eastern Europe, has ramped up staff in its collections and risk management departments.

Stop lumping us together! say Central Europeans

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An invitation to the Reuters Central European Investment Summit may sound perfectly acceptable to many policy makers and executives but not to Czech central banker Mojmir Hampl. It’s not that he objected to visiting our Vienna office and being interviewed by a crew of editors — Hampl was ready and willing to do that. He just questioned the very idea of lumping together all the different countries in a very diverse region.

 

“I’m a bit disappointed that the key topic is how the Central and Eastern European region will develop,” Hampl told us, reviving a complaint often heard around the region. It’s a serious issue, one that has bothered many policy makers in central European countries, who grew frustrated at the height of the financial crisis that investors were not differentiating between those with sound fundamentals such as the Czech Republic and Poland and those on decidedly shakier ground.

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