IEHI Feed: The Hedge Fund Implode-o-Meter Tracking the many faces of the global credit implosion. en-us iehi-feed-63764 Sat, 17 Mar 2018 00:35:23 GMT The Rise and Fall of Elizabeth Holmes and the Black Turtleneck With her blond hair and lipstick, her uniform set her apart from the hoodie pack as well as the suits, and made that Jobsian connection, giving her an aura of cool in the way that he was cool (and Apple is cool) but that most digi-geeks are not, when viewed by the non-digi world.

But such an individual uniform has a risk if you don't live up to the promise. In the end, it's the substance behind the style that makes the difference; what you wear becomes its expression. So already, what was once the symbol of her dedication has become the symbol of the backlash, as the revisionism has begun, with various columnists berating themselves for not "looking behind the black turtleneck."

Even on social media, it has not gone unnoticed.


In the same way that Gordon Gekko's suspenders and Michael Milken's toupee became symbols of their greed, Ms. Holmes's black turtleneck is starting to seem less a brilliant frame than a false front; a carefully calculated costume that fooled everyone into assuming she was more brilliant than she was; a symbol of hubris rather than success.

Those who live by the turtleneck, die by the turtleneck. It's enough to make the otherwise derided pantsuit look like the ... well, smart choice.

iehi-feed-63763 Fri, 16 Mar 2018 20:10:44 GMT Michigan Priest Financially Rapes Parishioners To Build $4 Million Mansion iehi-feed-63761 Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:45:41 GMT iHeartMedia files for bankruptcy to restructure $20 bln debt load IHeartMedia Inc filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Thursday as the largest U.S. radio station owner reached an in-principle agreement with creditors to restructure its overwhelming debt load.

The company, which filed for bankruptcy along with some of its units, said it reached the agreement with holders of more than $10 billion of its outstanding debt for a balance sheet restructuring, which would reduce its debt by more than $10 billion.

IHeartMedia, which has struggled with $20 billion of debt and falling revenue at its 858 radio stations, said cash on hand and cash generated from ongoing operations will be sufficient to fund the business during the bankruptcy process.


IHeartMedia skipped a $106 million interest payment on Feb. 1, triggering a 30-day grace period during which the company has tried to hammer out a deal with it bondholders.


Bain Capital and Thomas H. Lee Partners control 68 percent of the voting stock of iHeartMedia, according to the company's most recent annual report.

iehi-feed-63760 Thu, 15 Mar 2018 14:43:44 GMT Toys R Us submits plan to close or sell all US stores Toys R Us made official its liquidation on Thursday morning, filing documents with the bankruptcy court that will lead to the sale or closing of its roughly 800 U.S. stores.


It is a blow to the toy industry, which has relied on the retailer for supplying row after row of toys and premium pricing, and who now must look to big box stores and Amazon.


It is a black-eye for its its three owners, KKR, Bain Capital Partners and real estate investment trust Vornado Realty Trust, who took the retailer private in 2005 for $6.6 billion, leaving it with $4.9 billion in debt. That debt would become an anathema for the business, keeping it from making the investments it needed as the retail landscape rapidly transformed around it.

The debt, of course, was what ultimately did the company in. Under its onerous weight and with little hope of refinancing it, Toys R Us hired restructuring advisers in 2017. The plan was to put together pre-packaged bankruptcy for after the holiday season in advance of upcoming payments due, sources tell CNBC.

But when CNBC broke news that it may file, it caused a run on the bank. Vendors froze their shipments to Toys R Us, only accepting cash on delivery. In weeks, it was forced to file for bankruptcy before its crucial holiday season and without a plan to emerge. A miserable holiday season would be the nail in its coffin.


Years of being the most important toy store in town left it cavalier, according to those former employees and industry insiders. They said it didn't take care of its store base -- whether that meant pruning stores that weren't making money, or putting resources toward those that were. It also under-invested in its digital business even as e-commerce skyrocketed, those sources told CNBC.

iehi-feed-63759 Thu, 15 Mar 2018 12:02:02 GMT Chase QuickPay With Zelle Takes Longer Than Elephant Mating iehi-feed-63758 Wed, 14 Mar 2018 22:45:17 GMT Mattis-associated Theranos charged with 'massive fraud' by SEC Elizabeth Holmes, founder and CEO of the embattled blood testing startup company Theranos, has been charged with "massive fraud," the Securities and Exchange Commission announced Wednesday.

The SEC alleged that Holmes and the company's former President Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani raised more than $700 million from investors through an "elaborate, years-long fraud in which they exaggerated or made false statements about the company's technology, business, and financial performance."

The agency said Theranos and Holmes have agreed to settle the fraud charges. Holmes agreed to pay a $500,000 penalty and relinquish control of the company. She will be barred from serving as an officer or director of any public company for 10 years.

See, "traditional" companies are totally safe! That's why Google needs to go to the extent of banning ICO and cryptocurrency financial product ads, but the stock market is OK!

iehi-feed-63757 Wed, 14 Mar 2018 21:37:22 GMT Trump Taps Kudlow To Replace Cohn President Donald Trump will name Larry Kudlow, the conservative media analyst who served as his informal economic adviser during the 2016 campaign, as the next head of the White House National Economic Council, two sources familiar with the decision tell CNN.

Trump offered Kudlow the job Tuesday night over the phone and he accepted, the source said.


Kudlow's ascension, however, does not solve the disagreement inside the administration over Trump's tariff decision. The cable news personality has been outspoken in opposition to the tariff plan and wrote an op-ed for CNBC earlier this month that detailed his disagreements.

"In other words, steel and aluminum may win in the short term, but steel and aluminum users and consumers will lose," Kudlow wrote. "In fact, tariff hikes are really tax hikes."

Trump acknowledged his disagreement on tariffs with Kudlow in a conversation with reporters on Tuesday, but said he welcomed the difference of opinion.

"I'm looking at Larry Kudlow very strongly. I've known him a long time. We don't agree on everything but in this case I think that's good. I want to have a divergent opinion -- we agree on most," Trump said.

He added that Kudlow has "come around to believing in tariffs as a negotiating point."

Peter Navarro, Trump's top trade adviser and a fervent proponent of the President's tariffs, was seen as the force behind Cohn's eventual departure. The two butted heads over the decision and internally Trump's decision was seen as a win for Navarro and a damaging loss for Cohn.

Wary of the narrative that Navarro and Kudlow will clash in the same way that Navarro and Cohn did, a source close to Navarro said the President's trade adviser is "very happy" with Kudlow's selection.

iehi-feed-63756 Wed, 14 Mar 2018 17:28:48 GMT David Rockefeller Estate In NY Sells For $33 Million -50% More than Sales Price iehi-feed-63755 Tue, 13 Mar 2018 14:49:27 GMT California Ponzi Scheme Operator Pleads Guilty To $24 Million RE Scam iehi-feed-63754 Mon, 12 Mar 2018 16:20:02 GMT Disgraced Foreclosure King David Stern Continues Selling Off Assets iehi-feed-63753 Mon, 12 Mar 2018 03:17:56 GMT DeVos Family Members Busted In Tax Scam Dragnet iehi-feed-63752 Sun, 11 Mar 2018 16:44:06 GMT Is Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein About To Sing So Long Farewell? iehi-feed-63751 Sun, 11 Mar 2018 14:30:31 GMT Federal Prison Guard Pleads Guilty In Sabatino Prison Fraud Scheme iehi-feed-63750 Sun, 11 Mar 2018 01:30:14 GMT Follow The Money To Trump (And Jared's) "End Times" Even up to the moment Trump surprised everybody (including himself) by winning the 2016 election, major American banks would have sooner flushed their money down the toilet than lend any of it to him. Deutsche Bank and other foreign-based financial titans would work with the Trump Organization from time to time, but American bankers, having been burned too many times in the past, wanted nothing to do with him.

When the dust finally settles from the several on-going "Russiagate" investigations, it should become clear how Trump was able to bounce back from seemingly irreversible financial ruin as often as he has; the kindness of German bankers only explains so much.

... It is looking more likely than not that Russian oligarchs and similarly unsavory characters from distant lands with lax financial regulations figure in the explanation, and that person connected to criminal organizations or to Russian intelligence services played a role as well.

The way to find out is clear: follow the money. In this instance, there is a via regia, a royal road, a (comparatively) easy way to do that: look where the son-in-law has gone begging. What are Kushner's problems, after all, but Russiagate writ small?


Whether of not Trump's Teflon armor keeps on protecting him, the fact remains: the gods are closing in.  "Whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad," wrote Longfellow.  We can see it happening before our very eyes.

iehi-feed-63745 Sat, 10 Mar 2018 01:46:50 GMT Lots of new jobs, but workers will be upset with lack of wage gains (FED EXCUSE FOR SLOWING DOWN?) ... while on the surface, employers may be moderately more willing to take on new employees, the incentives offered to potential hires appear to be muted with wages fizzling after a pop at the turn of the calendar. 


With the February wage report posting a clear loss of momentum, it appears the skeptics at the Fed -- and in the market -- may be more accurately assessing domestic inflation, gaining support for a slower pace of rate hikes, and undermining the expectation for three interest rate increases over the remaining 10 months of the year.

That being said, according to Bloomberg, the probability of a March rate hike remains near 100 percent.

However, going forward, with the Fed setting the bar relatively high amid expectations for inflation to "move up" this year, without clear indications of rising inflation, let alone amid a further decline in price pressures, the Fed will have a very difficult time justifying any additional removal of accommodation.

iehi-feed-63744 Fri, 09 Mar 2018 15:10:28 GMT Martin Shkreli's arrogance may cost 'Pharma Bro' 10+ years behind bars ...Prosecutors have asked for Shkreli -- dubbed the "Pharma Bro" -- to be given 15 years in prison... Legal experts say he could easily get 10.Deciding Shkreli is responsible for $10.5m in losses means Matsumoto "can be as tough as she might want to be", said John Coffee of Columbia law school.

It would be a long sentence considering the crime. Coffee said Shkreli's crimes were similar to insider trading, and the longest sentence handed out in such a case is the 11 years given to the hedge fund manager Raj Rajaratnam. Rajaratnam was convicted of trading on illegal tips in the biggest such case brought in decades. It was a case that was "longer-term, more egregious and absolutely predatory", said Coffee.

So why might Shkreli get nearly as long? Basically, because he acted like a jerk. "His behavior during the trial was arrogant, and he treated the judge as an irrelevancy. Every defense counsel I know, and I know a lot of them, instructs his client to be respectful and modest because ultimately the judge is going to sentence you. Your arrogance can cost you a very high price," Coffee said.

iehi-feed-63741 Fri, 09 Mar 2018 04:41:20 GMT Corporate Bond Market Unprepared For "Big Reset" CVS Health Corp. sold $40 billion of bonds on Tuesday to help fund its $69 billion acquisition of Aetna, which is still pending regulatory review that may conclude later this year... Yet there was strong demand: $120 billion in orders for $40 billion in bonds. The deal was offered in seven tranches. According to investors, the 30-year portion sold with a yield of 1.96 percentage points above the equivalent Treasury yield.


In addition, the US Treasury Department will issue large amounts of debt to cover the ballooning federal deficits.

And in addition, the Fed has raised rates four times since December 2016 and will likely raise rates three or four times this year, and more next year.

So CVS tried to get its bonds sold before all this hits the fan. Because bond buyers -- mostly institutional investors, such as bond funds and pension funds -- are still in denial. They're still chasing yield, especially those speculating on the riskiest corporate bonds.


The Fed will succeed in tightening financial conditions. It always does. And when this starts to click, the adjustment will be sharp and possibly harsh for those companies that have relied on cheap and easy money to fund their operations. But for now, investors are still blithely oblivious to the coming reckoning in the corporate bond market.

iehi-feed-63740 Thu, 08 Mar 2018 14:29:13 GMT Kushner to be out of Gowanus, Brooklyn Property in sale to allow rezoning A deal has been reached to sell a major Gowanus development site that is co-owned by one of the largest commercial landlords in the city SL Green and White House adviser Jared Kushner's company Kushner Cos... The property is being purchased by RFR Realty for the rumored price around $120 million. In 2014, the site was bought for approximately $70 million by Kushner and SL Green. Kushner held a 5 percent share while the majority 95 percent was owned by SL Green.

... Kushner's involvement in the Gowanus development site had been viewed as problematic by some real estate investors in the area, according to sources, because of the antagonism it spurred from city officials who hold sway over the Gowanus rezoning.

... Back in November, the local councilman Brad Lander, whose approval is required for any rezoning in the Gowanus area, told WNYC, "Voting to take part in enriching the White House senior adviser ... that feels ethically tainted in a way I don't see how I could do and how I could ask my colleagues to do."

iehi-feed-63738 Thu, 08 Mar 2018 00:49:49 GMT Buy-the-Dip Believers Rejoice After White House Tries to Ease Trade Tension iehi-feed-63735 Tue, 06 Mar 2018 23:23:06 GMT Gary Cohn leaves White House in wake of tariff rift ``Cohn, who had once been rumored as a potential next chief of staff, will leave the White House in the wake of his fierce disagreement with the President's decision to impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. Cohn is expected to leave in the coming weeks, the White House said.


As recently as last week, Cohn was still thinking he could hold on -- and wanted to, this person says -- but losing the tariff fight made clear that it was time to leave, the person said.

"Trade was the last straw," the same person said.


For months, Cohn led the internal opposition to Trump's protectionist interests, working to rein in Trump's desire to slap steep tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. But his campaign fell apart last week when Trump sidestepped Cohn and announced his plans to impose the tariffs during a hastily arranged meeting with US steel and aluminum executives.