Thursday, February 12, 2009

Cell Phones and Investment Banks

A major Wall Street firm just revised its 2009 cellular handset growth estimate to -12% and nobody is batting an eyelash. I'm old enough to remember when cell phones were a growth business.

Down is still bad.


Bloomberg reported this morning that JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley may be working to repay the TARP funds as soon as possible, in order to avoid groundhogging days like yesterday. No kidding. The quality of the questions they were forced to answer was laughable. It's a sad state of affairs that members of Congress can summon important guys (even guys who screwed up big time) to a meeting, force them to be prepared to answer questions in detail and do no more prep themselves than printing a few emails from constituents

What exactly did Goldman Sachs do again? The U.S. government 5-year bond yield is 1.71%. The goverment borrows money at 1.7% forces Goldman to take a loan in for form of preferred shares at 5%. There is virtual certainty that Goldman will pay the money back. Doesn't sound like a lynching is warranted.

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