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Opinion

Off the record

"He’d been my client for 30 years, and he invited me down to see him at his home in Florida. When I got there he had assembled his entire family – wife, children, grandkids, the lot. I sat down. He handed me a letter and asked me to read it out loud to the room. It said simply: ‘Dear Bob, In the event that I should pass away, please tell my wife exactly what she needs to do, and ensure that she does it’"
The CEO of a major wealth management firm shows just how important – and demanding – relationships with billionaire clients can be

"You can tell the structured finance market is hot; even my headhunter has been headhunted!"
A structured finance banker bemoans his inability to source good talent

"I kinda want them to have a medium-sized catastrophe"
A Europe-based head of securitization shows little sympathy for continuing US sub-prime woes

"Folks, the ground underneath the house goes with it. You do know that, right?"
An exasperated auctioneer despairs of the derisory prices being achieved at a Detroit house auction. Who said the sub-prime dislocation would be short-lived?

"It’s a huge arbitrage opportunity and it’s also really good for the bank from a PR perspective"
A head of energy derivatives at a top European investment bank explains his enthusiasm for market-based climate change solutions

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