Friday was the last day for companies on the government dole to submit their pay plans to Kenneth Feinberg, our nation’s new Pay Czar. The new compensation commissar is as powerful as a mid-winter blizzard on the Eurasian Steppe. According to Law.com:
The Obama administration’s “pay czar” is embarking on a review of proposed compensation packages for the top employees at seven companies that are on government life support, marking the first time a federal official will have veto power over how much private-sector executives are compensated.
Kenneth Feinberg, who ran the government’s fund for families of the victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, has 60 days to approve or reject the compensation plans submitted this week from bailout recipients. They include American International Group Inc. and General Motors.
Can’t you just see a detail of Feinberg’s men assigned to follow Fritz Henderson (the new CEO of GM) during his training routine? One day maybe Fritz will outrun Feinberg’s men and climb to the top of a high peak and scream “Fein-BERG,” as he prepares for an epic final battle with Feinberg himself?
In the meantime, here are more reasons why being a lawyer right now is better than being a banker.
Or maybe good news? It seems they’ll get to enjoy Labor Day weekend before any trouble hits.
Read more and discuss over at Dealbreaker.
Federal Prosecutors May Let Andy And Mark Madoff Enjoy Labor Day Weekend
A U.S. House member wants Bank of America to turn over extensive documentation relating to its Merrill Lynch deal (with a focus on lossess and loss projections at Merrill). We wonder which law firm is representing B of A in this matter — there’s nothing like a good old-fashioned congressional investigation to get the billable-hour engines revving.
Read more and discuss over at Dealbreaker.
In A Surprising Twist, Lawmakers Focus On The BAC/ML Merger [Dealbreaker]
If the SEC was a private law firm, it would have dissolved already.
The SEC is taking action against Bank of America over its bonus payments. But it probably won’t matter. Even if the SEC levels BOA with huge fine, we’ll probably just bail them out of again.
Click on the link below to read more about the suit.
BAC May Need Some More TARP Funds…… [Dealbreaker]
If some law firms are not willing to invite members of the class of 2010 to work for them over the summer, why should banks?
We just received word that Citigroup has decided to cancel its 2010 Summer Program for 2L summer associates. A tipster sent us this email that students at Penn Law School received this morning:
I regret to inform you that Citigroup is not having a summer class for the Summer of 2010 and has cancelled all of it on campus interviews. Your bid will not be lost as we will consolidate it before we process the interview schedules. I apologize for any inconvenience this cancellation may cause you. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you need further assistance.
All the best,
Did you know that Citigroup got legal talent fresh off of the law school tree? Well, they don’t anymore.
Let’s look at what the program used to be after the jump.
Could the credit rating agencies who are now being sued for their alleged role in the financial meltdown have a valid First Amendment defense? Floyd Abrams, god of First Amendment law and longtime partner at Cahill Gordon & Reindel, thinks so.
Abrams is the subject of a lengthy, interesting article in Sunday’s New York Times, focused on his representation of Standard & Poor’s, the biggest of the rating agencies. From the NYT:
Dozens of investors have filed lawsuits seeking redress from the rating agencies, contending that the companies bear responsibility for investors’ losses, under a Whitman’s sampler of theories. The recession, in other words, is about to begin its litigation phase, and Mr. Abrams and a handful of partners at the law firm of Cahill Gordon & Reindel are readying defenses for more than 30 suits filed against S.& P. Up first, an oral argument on a motion to dismiss one case is set for July 31….
Mr. Abrams will contend that S.& P.’s ratings deserve exactly the sort of free-speech protections afforded to journalists, on the theory that a bond rating is like an editorial — an opinion based on an educated guess about the future. And for the same reason you can’t sue editorial writers, Mr. Abrams will argue that you can’t sue a bond rater because the economy went into a free fall that few saw coming.
Is this a valid comparison? Is trying to sue a ratings agency like trying to sue a newspaper editorial board? Or the weatherman?
Read more, and debate the issue, after the jump.
Sir Allen Stanford, financier / accused fraudster, has some issues with the conditions of his pretrial confinement.
Read more and comment over at our sister site, Dealbreaker.
Sir Stanford Takes Issue With Conditions Behind Bars [Dealbreaker]
Thanks to everyone who attended last week’s cocktail hour and panel discussion, Market Volatility & Your Finances. The well-attended event — held at the headquarters of AXA Advisors, in a spacious room with stunning views of Central Park (see above) — was informative and fun.
A special thanks to Larry Bahr and AXA Advisors for hosting the evening. If you’re looking for a financial advisor to help you navigate these challenging times, you should definitely drop Larry a line.
We’ll be doing more Above the Law events in the future. If you’re interested in possibly sponsoring an event, please contact our sales and marketing director, Elyse DiPierri, by email (subject line: “Event Sponsorship”).
Check out the pictures, after the jump.