Bear Stearns

Bear Stearns BSC Above the Law blog.jpgCongratulations to Williams & Connolly and Hughes Hubbard & Reed, the firms that represented Ralph Cioffi, and Brune & Richard, the litigation boutique that represented Matthew Tannin.
Ed. note: This post has been corrected; an earlier version switched the defendants around. Thanks for pointing out the mistake, commenters.
Not Guilty! [Dealbreaker]
Breaking News: Bear Defendants Found Not Guilty on All Charges [WSJ Law Blog]
BREAKING: Bear Stearns Hedge Fund Managers Not Guilty [Am Law Daily]
Bear Stearns Hedge Fund Managers NOT Guilty On All Counts [Business Insider]

Bear Stearns BSC Above the Law blog.jpg* Is everybody ready for the upcoming Bear Stearns trial? Here’s the pregame information you need to know. [Dealbook]
* In the matter of Jon v. Kate, maybe people don’t have enough sympathy for Jon? I don’t know, China’s “one child” rule looks better and better every day. [Double X]
* With all the talk about increased efficiency in legal services, you’d think that legal services have been ineffectively delivered up until now. [Technolawyer]
* How long should it really take to go from judicial misconduct to judicial apology? [Legally Unbound]
* Did you think my Obama-colored glasses were knocked off when he won the Nobel Peace Prize? [True/Slant]
* Meanwhile, they also give Nobel Prizes for other disciplines. Professor Bainbridge has some thoughts on this year’s winners in economics. [Professor Bainbridge]
* A 24-year-old woman tried to enroll in a high school as a 15-year-old boy. No pictures are available, but I have to assume that was one unattractive 24-year-old woman. [My Law Life]
* A Blawg Review to inspire all the would-be Emperors out there. [Popehat via Blawg Review]

untitled-5.jpgAs the Fed steps in to save the financial world with a bridge to nowhere AIG, we pause to reflect on the results from Monday’s ATL / Lateral Link survey, which asked whether the woes of Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch would hurt your career.

We received 830 responses, and quite a few of them looked like this one:

It’s the end of the world.

Overall, 42% of practicing attorneys said the demise of Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch would hurt their careers, which is way up from the 27% who said the same about Bear Stearns back in March. Law students are even more concerned, with 50% of 3Ls, 68% of 2Ls, and 63% of 1Ls feeling fearful.

While a third of New Yorkers were afraid about the impact of Bear Stearns back in March, the more recent collapses have frightened 55% of the Big Apple’s Big Law respondents. In fact, fear has risen dramatically in every market:

Responses by market: Are you afraid that the recent collapse will hurt your career?


City/Region
After Merrill Lynch    
& Lehman Brothers    
After
Bear Stearns
Austin
20% yes
-
Dallas
20% yes
-
Miami
20% yes
-
Boston
31% yes
16% yes
Houston
34% yes
-
Washington, D.C.    
37% yes
20% yes
Bay Area
38% yes
13% yes
Chicago
39% yes
8% yes
Los Angeles
41% yes
24% yes
Philadelphia
44% yes
17% yes
Atlanta
54% yes
25% yes
Charlotte
54% yes
-
New York
55% yes
33% yes

Additional discussion, including selected comments from survey respondents, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Associate Life Survey: Life After Lehman Brothers?”


Bear Stearns BSC Above the Law blog.jpgLawyer layoffs: they’re not just an American phenomenon. Last month, for example, DLA Piper laid off lawyers in London. Here’s more layoff news from that fair city, from TheLawyer.com:

More than half of the UK lawyers at US investment bank Bear Stearns have been axed since the ­collapsed bank was taken over by JPMorgan.

Out of 23 lawyers in ­London’s legal department, only 10 were offered new positions by JPMorgan, with nine accepting.

Fortunately, Bear Stearns refugees are landing new jobs without too much apparent difficulty. The Lawyer reports that ex-Bear Stearns attorneys have landed at Bingham McCutchen and Brown Rudnick, in New York and London, respectively.
JPMorgan cuts Bear’s headcount [The Lawyer]

Bear Stearns BSC Above the Law blog.jpgWith JPMorgan quintupling its offer for Bear Stearns earlier this morning, it seems like an appropriate time to discuss last week’s ATL / Lateral Link survey, which asked you whether you were afraid the recent Bear Stearns collapse would hurt your career.
Twenty-seven percent of you said yes. New Yorkers were the most concerned, with roughly one third of respondents opining that the Bear Stearns collapse would hurt their careers. A quarter of respondents in Los Angeles and Atlanta and a fifth of respondents in Washington, DC said the same. In Boston and Philadelphia, seventeen percent of respondents were afraid the Bear Stearns event would hurt their careers, while in the Bay Area, the number fell to an unlucky thirteen percent. Respondents in Chicago, Dallas, and Houston were generally unafraid.
Concern was most pronounced among the newest lawyers and those closest to partnership. Twenty-eight percent of respondents in the Class of 2007, and thirty percent of respondents in the Classes of 2000 and 2001 were afraid that the Bear Stearns collapse would hurt their careers. A whopping fifty percent of respondents who graduated before 2000 shared this concern. Law students are also more likely to be frightened, with 43% of law students responding that they were afraid that the Bear Stearns event will hurt their careers.
Additional discussion, including selected comments from survey respondents, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Featured Job Survey: A Bears Market?”

As we can see from the comments, you’re already all over this NYT story. We linked to it in Morning Docket, but here’s a little more. Andrew Ross Sorkin writes:

Wachtell Lipton Rosen Katz WLRK AboveTheLaw Above the Law blog.jpgJPMorgan and Bear were prompted to renegotiate after shareholders began threatening to block the deal and it emerged that several “mistakes” were included in the original, hastily written contract, according to people involved in the talks.

One sentence was “inadvertently included,” according to a person briefed on the talks, which requires JPMorgan to guarantee Bear’s trades even if shareholders voted down the deal. That provision could allow Bear’s shareholders to seek a higher bid while still forcing JPMorgan to honor its guarantee, these people said.

When the error was discovered, James Dimon, JPMorgan’s chief executive, who was described by one participant as “apoplectic,” began calling his lawyers at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz to seek a way to have the sentence modified, these people said. Finger pointing over the mistakes in the contracts began as bankers blamed the lawyers and vice versa.

We don’t have much to add to Ted Frank’s excellent observations. Here’s an open thread for anti-Wachtell schadenfreude.
(They’re big boys — and they send their clients big bills. So the WLRK folks can take a little snark and ribbing from the ATL commentariat.)
Update (11:40 AM): Actually, did Wachtell make a mistake? If so, what exactly was their error? Over at Dealbreaker, our colleague John Carney wonders: “How do you ‘inadvertently include’ a provision everyone is talking about?” (Gavel bang: commenter.)
How Do You Inadvertently Include A Provision Everyone Is Talking About? [Dealbreaker]
The dangers of doing an M&A agreement over a weekend [Overlawyered]
Did Mistakes in the JPM-Bear Contract Help Lead to Renegotiation? [WSJ Law Blog]
JPMorgan in Negotiations to Raise Bear Stearns Bid [New York Times]

Great Depression 2 Dorothea Lange Migrant Mother Above the Law blog.JPG* “Are we headed for another Great Depression?” [McClatchy]
* Quelle surprise: Bear Stearns shareholder lawsuit (filed in S.D.N.Y. by Coughlin Stoia). [Bloomberg; WSJ Law Blog (PDF of complaint)]
* Speaking of Bear Stearns, here are some law firms losing out on BSC business. [WSJ Law Blog]
* Tenth Circuit reverses convictions of former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio. [AP]
* Harvard Law School will pay the 3L tuition of future students who agree to work for nonprofit organizations or government for five years following graduation. [New York Times via Tax Prof Blog; Harvard Law School (news release)]
* Settlement in Paul McCartney-Heather Mills divorce (more on this later). [Legal Week]
* SCOTUS to hear Second Amendment / D.C. gun control case today (more on this later too). [New York Times; Reuters]