Category Archives: defenestrations

John Thain’s PR Expenditures

When Maria Bartiromo asked John Thain about his notorious office, he replied: Well, first of all, it– it is true. This was a year ago or actually a little bit more than a year ago in a very differ– different– … Continue reading

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John Thain, RIP

It was always a bit weird that John Thain was going to stay on at Bank of America, but as it turned out, he lasted less than a month before getting fired this morning by the equally-beleaguered Ken Lewis. The … Continue reading

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Executives’ Heads on a Pike

Fortune’s Roger Parloff can paint quite a picture: An angry mob of investors and taxpayers is assembling, and they want to see some executives’ heads on pikes. Astonishingly, this photo just came in from the wonderful David Sunstrum. The angry … Continue reading

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How Safe is Ken Lewis?

Oh, the fickle Wall Street Journal. It was so kind last month, when the American Banker named Bank of America’s Ken Lewis Banker of the Year for the second time in six years: If anyone deserved the award, it is … Continue reading

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Thain’s Elegant Exit

The difference between Dick Fuld and John Thain is that Thain knows when to let go: It could not be determined if Mr. Thain will play a role in the new company, but two people briefed on the negotiations said … Continue reading

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How Long Will Rick Wagoner Last?

Joe Nocera is taking to blogging like Steve Jobs took to turtlenecks: “Rick has the unified support of the entire board to a person,” the company’s lead outside director, George M.C. Fisher, told Bill Vlasic of The Times in an … Continue reading

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Adventures in Acceleration, Goldman Sachs Edition

If you’re a bond, being accelerated is not a good thing. If you’re a Goldman Sachs analyst, likewise. Analysts normally have a two-year gig, after which they go on to MBAs or some other job, but Goldman Sachs has decided … Continue reading

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Martin Sullivan Deathwatch: It’s All Over Now

Liam Pleven, in the WSJ, seems almost sorry for AIG CEO Martin Sullivan, now he’s being fired: It’s not clear what a new chief executive, interim or permanent, can do to solve those problems amid ongoing upheaval in the mortgage … Continue reading

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The End of Lehman

Why the defenestrations at Lehman? There’s one reason, and one reason only: the share price, which was meant to go up, instead went down. And frankly the only reason Fuld himself still has his job is that he is also … Continue reading

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Martin Sullivan Deathwatch, Redux

Martin Sullivan is still holding on to the CEO job at AIG, despite last month’s attempt to use the WSJ to oust him. Still, if at first you don’t succeed, try again, and so there’s a new front-page WSJ story … Continue reading

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Whither WaMu’s Killinger?

There were just 24 days between Ken Thompson losing his chairmanship of Wachovia and his being fired by the board. At that rate, Kerry Killinger of WaMu, who lost his chairmanship today, is likely to be fired on June 26. … Continue reading

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Martin Sullivan Deathwatch

In terms of Jack Flack’s five levels of CEO media hell, AIG’s Martin Sullivan has now graduated from "on the ropes" to "dead man walking". The WSJ’s headline says it all: "AIG’s Chief Faces Worries Of Investors and Directors" – … Continue reading

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SocGen CEO Finally Resigns

Finally. SocGen CEO Daniel Bouton will officially resign as of May 12, and it seems like SocGen’s head of investment banking, Jean-Pierre Mustier, won’t last much longer either. Bouton will remain as chairman, but my guess is that’s a face-saving … Continue reading

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Buffett Caves

Well, that didn’t take long. A week ago the WSJ reported that Federal prosecutors were requesting the resignation of General Re CEO Joe Brandon; today it happened, despite Brandon’s having the strong support of his boss, Warren Buffett. I don’t … Continue reading

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Wall Street Euphemism Watch

At Citigroup, the guy in charge of firing people is known as the "head of productivity". Someone give Vikram Pandit a bloody shovel already.

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The End of the Monolines

It looks like the end of the monolines to me. FGIC has already said it’s splitting – something which, legally, is fraught at best. Ambac is trying to raise $2 billion in new equity before, yes, splitting. And now MBIA … Continue reading

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Albert Lord: The Deathwatch Begins

How did Albert Lord become CEO of Sallie Mae? He hardly showered himself in glory during the whole debacle with Chris Flowers, during which time he was so busy refusing to negotiate on the sale price that (a) the entire … Continue reading

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The Wolfowitz Ouster, Redux

Fox News journalist James Rosen has a long and largely sympathetic account of Paul Wolfowitz’s ouster from the World Bank in the November issue of Playboy. At the beginning of the piece he’s unambiguous: What happened to Wolfowitz was more … Continue reading

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Citi: Looking Weak

Never mind the Rubin news; that was all but a given. And the Bischoff news is not that much of a big deal either: the chap is the classic safe pair of hands who will be competent enough at managing … Continue reading

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Chuck Prince Deathwatch: Keep an Eye on Medina-Mora

The WSJ is reporting that Citigroup is holding an emergency board meeting this weekend, and that Chuck Prince’s ouster might be on the agenda: It wasn’t clear precisely what the meeting would address, but the subject of further writedowns could … Continue reading

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Jimmy Cayne Declares Victory Over WSJ

Cayne, on CNBC, via Dealbreaker: "It’s unbelievable. The phones are ringing off the hook, and everyone wants to play golf with me now." I’m glad it seems to have worked out this way. There are good reasons for a CEO … Continue reading

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How Jimmy Cayne Can Survive the WSJ Attack

The WSJ is splashing Kate Kelly’s story about Jimmy Cayne’s part-time leadership of Bear Stearns this summer all over the front page of its newspaper and website. There’s a full spectrum of reactions, ranging from the hoped-for push towards Cayne’s … Continue reading

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O’Neal and Parsons Both Out?

It’s not a good day to be a black CEO in America: both Stan O’Neal of Merrill Lynch and Dick Parsons of Time Warner seem to be on their way out, with the shares of both companies soaring as a … Continue reading

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Merrill’s Board Turns on O’Neal

Who told the NYT’s Jenny Anderson about Stan O’Neal’s abortive attempt to float a merger with Wachovia? She sources her scoop to "people close to the beleaguered Wall Street firm," which is not very helpful, but it seems clear that … Continue reading

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Speculating over Chuck Prince’s Ouster

Duff McDonald stilettoes Chuck Prince in this week’s New York, just in time for Citi’s dreadful earnings. McDonald says that Prince’s CEOship has been "a nightmare" since shortly after he got the top job, largely because he "regularly violated a … Continue reading

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