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Off the record

“The sovereign always wins. Someone has to pay the sovereign bill and it is always the corporates – you can’t take on the house”

An investor is baffled by the trend of some corporates trading tighter than the sovereign

“The only way to do business in Africa is offshore”

A capital markets banker fails the political correctness test

“There will always be some brave people prepared to do opportunistic M&A in times of uncertainty – they are the ones with the 80ft yachts”

Who dares wins according to this banker

“ the next step, knowing that the tax would increase on that date in December, was to buy up all of the – wait, is this for publication? Er, you’d better not write this actually. What I did was definitely not illegal but it...pushed some boundaries”

A corporate chief executive in Asia, recalling an early coup in his career, has a sudden change of heart mid-anecdote

“Testing banks for damage from one or more sovereign defaults is the one thing the EBA can’t do. It would be taken as an official admission that Europe now faces a solvency crisis not a liquidity crisis”

One banker explains the key omission from the European banking system stress test

“What’s the collective noun for black swans? Well, I’ve been seeing – flocks? – of them lately”

A Korean banker’s wry take on the eventful first few months of 2011

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