Deutsche Bank executive woes continue

Deutsche Bank announced over the weekend that its top C-Suite executives would not be getting a bonus again this year.

CEO John Cryan strangely made the announcement Friday night at Austin’s South By Southwest conference, stating that for the third consecutive year top execs would forego year end payouts as the bank struggles to pull itself out of the mire of questionable trading practices.

As many of you may know I wrote extensively three years ago about the rash of suicides within the bank just as the Libor scandal was breaking.

The German uber bank did note that bonuses for other employees would total just over $2B for 2017.

The news comes as the 10-year anniversary of Bear Stearns’ demise hits Thursday, which led to the Great Recession. On March 14th 2008, the Federal Reserve agreed to provide a $25B loan to keep the bank solvent for 28 days as they unwound Jimmy Cayne’s troubled bank.

As the Fed dug deeper into Bear’s books that offer was pulled a day later and on the 16th of March, JPM CEO found the pot gold scooping up Bear for seven cents on the dollar with a $2 a share offer.

Dimon also made sure that nothing on the troubled bank’s books could come back and bite him with Fed chief Ben Bernanke assuring Dimon the Fed would take the hit as it put up $29B and JPM invested $1B for the sale.

In the following week a Bear shareholder lawsuit was filed and JPMorgan raised its offer price from $2 a share to $10 a share to quell the suit. As a point of contrast Bear Stearns stock was trading at $93 a share in late February 2008.

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Wall Street divided on cryptocurrencies

The House of Morgan is divided over bitcoin.

While JPMorgan chief Jamie Dimon is so anti crypto that he even belittled his daughter’s trading bitcoin and told his traders if he found them trading cryptos they would be fired for stupidity.

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Deutsche Bank’s survival needs a ‘miracle’: Report

A Wall Street research firm issued a report Tuesday questioning the leadership and the short-term future of Deutsche Bank.

In the report Autonomous Research stated that the troubled German bank may be “beyond repair” barring a “miracle” boom at its fabled bond-trading business.

 Autonomous co-founder Stuart Graham wrote that the past decade of scandals have left Deutsche with a horrible reputation on the street and after paying billions in penalties the bank’s underinvestment in technology has left it a “clear laggard” to rivals like JPMorgan.

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Dimon trashes bitcoin, but is OK with CDSs

JPMorgan’s chief Jamie Dimon in a seemingly unprovoked response took on bitcoin again Tuesday at banking conference in Manhattan.

Tuesday, America’s shadow president as some have called him, belittled his daughter in order to trash bitcoin. Dimon said that his daughter purchased some bitcoin, concluding “it went up and she thinks she is a genius.”

But he went on to say he would fire any trader who bought bitcoin just for being stupid.

It’s a shame Dimon did not have the same outlook when it came to his traders  buying credit default swaps in London in 2012 when the bank lost more than $7 billion on the London Whale trade.

Look, I’ve met Jamie Dimon, and interviewed him. He has strong opinions on government and regulations. He makes no bones about how great America is and he does not suffer fools lightly.

And to be honest, he could be dead on with bitcoin. It’s not a great stretch to think governments would crackdown on untaxable money moving around the globe, but let’s not forget that Dimon has written checks totaling more than $21 billion in penalties and fines to Uncle Sam because his traders were stupid with packaging mortgages or manipulating commodities during and shortly after the Great Recession.

While bitcoin has fallen below $4,000 since his statements, bitcoin is up a mere 1,100% since the JPM chief trashed it in 2015 at the same conference. Dimon admitted he does not know how high the crypto could go before the crash saying, “it could hit $100,000 before it drops.”

There’s no way to know who will be right on any investment, and yes there will always be pain when markets crash. But for Dimon to say bitcoin is a joke and compare it to the tulip craze is so far off base, since his firm is using blockchain technology right now and  developing it for broader applications.

For a man who hates government over regulating banking, his words on a crackdown in the crypto space ring hollow to me.

Prime Minister May signs EU divorce papers

British Prime Minister Theresa May signed the EU divorce papers on Tuesday.

Brexit has officially begun as foreign exchange response seems to be muted as both the pound and euro traded off slightly against the dollar. US equities and bonds were also nonplussed by the much-anticipated move by the Brits.

City of London bankers from US banks such as Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan are still awaiting news whether they will be moving before March 29, 2019 to the continent in order to smoothly transition to servicing EU-based clients.

Now May has to deal with the Scots wanting independence to rejoin the EU.