Showing posts with label Wall Street. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wall Street. Show all posts

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The bad old days of the 1980s are back (but maybe not what you're thinking)

From today's Wall Street Journal:

At law firm Bickel & Brewer, even the mailroom clerks wear suits and ties. Until recently, that might have been considered extreme. But now, power dressing is coming back in style, and the old-school law firm has a new relevance.

As law-firm layoffs mount, fear of unemployment appears to be speeding up the resurgence of power clothes, even among the youngest recruits. Legal interns have begun flouting business-casual dress codes and wearing suits instead, says Gretchen Neels, a Boston communications consultant who works with law firms and graduate schools. "In our economic times, you really want to have your game on. You can't be too formal," she says.

Power clothes are selling well at menswear retailer Paul Fredrick. Those white-collared, colored dress shirts that Gordon Gekko favored in the 1987 movie "Wall Street" have been big sellers in recent months, says Dean White, executive vice president of merchandise. So are yellow power ties, another 1980s dress-for-success accessory.

Whatever...I just hope those mobile phones come back in style...I still use mine. The looks I get!

Saturday, January 31, 2009


Item: "Wall Street bonuses were more than $18 billion last year — roughly what they were in the fatty, solvent days of 2004."

“My bonus is ‘shameful’ — but I worked hard to get it,” said John Konstantinidis, a wholesale insurance broker, lunching Friday at Harry’s at Hanover Square.

“I’m a HENRY,” Mr. Konstantinidis added. “High Earner but Not Rich Yet.”

Friday, January 9, 2009

Bulls? Really? Maybe tough bears

At the NYSE yesterday.

Glad Ford is sponsoring this! They have the money to spend! The Professional Bull Riders 2009 Invitational is this weekend at Madison Square Garden. (I'm surprising Mrs. Grieve and taking her for an early Valentine's Day gift! Oh, man. That would be classic.)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Somebody is seeing pink hippos on Wall Street!

And what is "seeing pink hippos" a euphemism for...?

Oh, and this photo was taken before the tree went up in front of the NYSE yesterday. Esquared has a nice shot of that.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

This week's sign of the apocalypse

Gene Simmons rang the Opening Bell at the NYSE yesterday. This after the clown did the honors last Friday. Oh, and the Dow dropped 427 points yesterday. Can't wait to watch Family Jewels! (Dealbreaker)

Thursday, November 6, 2008


The first clues are emerging that Wall Street pay will plummet this year . . . Bonuses for top executives could plunge by 70 percent. (New York Times)

Friday, October 31, 2008

About that Obama/Luke Skywalker vs. McCain/Darth Vader video

Four weeks ago (Christ, where did October go?), I had a post on the Obama/Luke Skywalker vs. McCain/Darth Vader battle in front of the NYSE on Wall Street. It was obviously some pro-Obama propaganda. Sure enough, someone involved with the project sent along a note telling me that the final product was ready. So now you can watch the two light-saber battle (can this be a verb?) their way around some familiar NYC landmarks:

This is all fine. But, as an ethical journalist, I can't allow a pro-Obama bit to go by without hearing from the other candidate. I need to put my politics aside and be fair. So, in that spirit:

Friday, October 24, 2008

Young former Wall Street workers ponder their next move

The Times has a lengthy piece today on the recent college graduates who suddenly find themselves without jobs on Wall Street:

Mr. Menzul, 22, is among the untold numbers of young finance types caught in limbo by the economic crisis, yearning to stay in the nation’s financial heart yet fearful that no market rebound is in sight. It is impossible to gauge how many such strivers are leaving New York or considering it. But interviews over the past two weeks with affected workers and recruiters revealed an emerging portrait of newly minted college graduates suddenly jobless in a frightfully expensive city, and forced to contemplate a change in career — or address.


Adjina Dekidjiev, an operations manager at Manhattan Apartments Inc., said she had been seeing more people trying to break leases, some leaving, some just looking for cheaper places to live.
“A lot of people are doing their math, asking, ‘How can I stay in the city, for as long as possible, and try to find a job?’ ” said Win Hornig, who started the blog after being laid off from JPMorgan in September. “People are definitely going to leave the city if the market doesn’t come back. It’s just too expensive.”

And before you make a smartassy, ha-ha comment, the Times wants you to understand this:

Many in New York have delighted, at least a little, in a sense of schadenfreude over investment-banker woes, having viewed them as a greedy breed that helped homogenize and gentrify the city. But the market crisis has already had widening ripple effects, and many young people working in jobs related to the finance sector were never making a mother lode.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Forget James Cramer and his ilk, how would Joey Ramone invest in this troubled market?

Given our recessive economy, Theresa K. at Punk Turns 30 asks a sensible question, Where is stock market wiz Joey Ramone when you need him? Indeed! As she notes, "While Joey Ramone made his mark in public singing songs like 'Teenage Lobotomy' and 'Cretin Hop' and seeming to endorse a loser way of life . . . in reality, he was very well aware of his stock portfolio. Yes, the man had investments. He was no dummy although he played one on (m)TV."

This article in the Guardian UK from July 2006 examines the friendship Ramone struck with the Money Honey, CNBC's Maria Bartiromo. At first, though, she igonored his e-mails when they first appeared in 1998. Probably just another weirdo!

After a while though, curiosity got the better of her and Bartiromo, arguably the most recognisable business journalist in the United States, replied. "I started getting e-mails from him and he would say Maria, what do you think about Intel or what do you think about AOL and I thought who is this person emailing me? It's crazy, he's calling himself Joey Ramone," she recalls. "Sure enough it was him and we developed this friendship. And he was attuned to the markets. He really understood his own investment portfolio. Joey Ramone was a fantastic investor."

Ramone, of course, also wrote the song "Maria Bartiromo," which appeared on 2002's "Don't Worry About Me," the first posthumous release to come from his estate.

As the song goes:

What's happening on Wall Street
What's happening at the stock exchange
I want to know
What's happening on Squawk Box
What's happening with my stocks
I want to know
I watch you on the TV every single day
Those eyes make everything OK
I watch her every day
I watch her every night
She's really out of sight
Maria Bartiromo
Maria Bartiromo
Maria Bartiromo

Bartiromo had this to say about the track:

"He said to me Maria, I wrote a song about you and he said just come down to CBGBs in Manhattan, be there at midnight. I said, Joey, I'm sorry to tell you but I have to be on the air at 6am and I can't be anywhere at midnight except in my bed, so I didn't go." Instead, at Ramone's urging, she sent a camera crew. "Sure enough, the cameraman came back with the tape and there's him and his band with this song Maria Bartiromo and I just love it. It's a tremendous tribute. I just love that. It's great, just great."

Here are two versions of the song....the first with some Money Honey cheesecake...

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

No shots in front of George for tourists on Monday afternoon

While it doesn't have the historical significance of Carrie Bradshaw's stoop, the George Washington statue in front of Federal Hall on Wall Street is a busy tourist destination. These photos I borrowed from random strangers on Flickr show just this...(and bonus points for tourists who strike the Washington post with a hand outstretched...)

Anyway! Bad news for tourists on Monday! Why? Because several media outlets hogged up the space for aerial shots of Wall Street.

So tourists had to make do with other photo opps for the the dumpster alongside Federal Hall. (And why would anyone take this shot of a dumpster...?)

Thursday, October 9, 2008


The end of bling. Via The Wall Street Journal:

Francesco Trapani, chief executive of Bulgari Group, is cutting back on the fixed costs of his jet-setting lifestyle. The jewelry, luxury-goods and hotel magnate recently sold his 137-foot yacht, the "Christianne B," and he's holding off on buying any more homes. Even his bespoke Micocci shirt was slightly frayed at the collar last week -- a fact he acknowledged with an apologetic smile.

"I'm being more prudent," Mr. Trapani said. "I spent a lot of money this summer renting houses and things. But when the summer's over, it's over."

Not even the richest people are feeling untouched by our current financial crisis. In their personal lives, as in business, the purveyors of luxury are sizing up what it all means. Some of the questions: Is it unseemly to spend money publicly? Will people still shop for the all-important holiday season? Is this the end of bling?

Francois Henri Pinault, chief executive of French luxury giant PPR, said a few weeks ago that there will always be rich people, but the question is how they will behave as consumers.

The answer may have a lot to do with how these consumers want to be seen. It's not necessarily a good thing to show up at the tennis club with a new $30,000 crocodile handbag when your friends' net worth has been halved and the Federal Reserve is spending billions to keep the banking system afloat

Monday, October 6, 2008

"The Battle Hymn of the Republic" on Wall Street

A (rather eerie, if you ask me) version of "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" performed on the steps of Federal Hall on Wall Street across the street from the New York Stock Exchange.

We can probably read into this in many ways...

Looking at old Wall Street

Well, old as in 1966, with this spot for Shearson Hammill. Love the ticker tapes and punch buttons on the NYSE floor. And the fat cat getting a shave...

Friday, October 3, 2008

The networks are taking the presidential debates a little too far

Obama/Luke Skywalker vs. McCain/Darth Vader in front of the NYSE today on Wall Street.

Wall Street Week in Review

As our nation's economy gasped and wheezed through another traumatic week, enterprising reporters, tourists, news networks, protestors and, uh, bloggers, braved a chaotic Wall Street to be a witness to history. Or something equally dramatic.

Here are some snapshots from the week that was Wall Street.

From a gilded age to a great emptiness...

An excerpt from Judith Warner's "Waiting for Schadenfreude" column in the Times today:

For those of us who have hated this period — the wealth worship, the wealth gap, the elevation of everything suspiciously shiny and irrationally bubbly and stupidly ebullient, there should be some feeling of vindication. But it just isn’t coming. A great emptiness — and a gnawing kind of fear — has taken its place.

Schadenfreude is impossible because the fat cats — the ones who bent the rules, the ones who pushed the envelopes, the ones who paid lower taxes because capital gains were most of their income, the ones who opposed regulations on the banking and mortgage industries — are taking us down with them.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Though photos with Maria Bartiromo cost $10

CNBC was camped out all day yesterday across from the NYSE on Wall Street covering the continued economic collapse of the free world. Well, it was a long day. And there sure were many pesky -- no, we love you! -- tourists milling about. So the tourists asked if they could have their photo taken inside the CNBC van.

What we can learn from Meyer Mishkin...or not

David Leonhardt writing in the Times today:

In 1929, Meyer Mishkin owned a shop in New York that sold silk shirts to workingmen. When the stock market crashed that October, he turned to his son, then a student at City College, and offered a version of this sentiment: It serves those rich scoundrels right.

A year later, as Wall Street’s problems were starting to spill into the broader economy, Mr. Mishkin’s store went out of business. He no longer had enough customers. His son had to go to work to support the family, and Mr. Mishkin never held a steady job again.

Frederic Mishkin — Meyer’s grandson and, until he stepped down a month ago, an ally of Ben Bernanke’s on the Federal Reserve Board — told me this story the other day, and its moral is obvious enough. Many people in Washington fear that the country is starting to spiral into a terrible downturn. And to their horror, they see the public, and many members of Congress, turning into modern-day Meyer Mishkins, more interested in punishing Wall Street than saving the economy.