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Off the record

"Richard Branson likes to make out he’s Robin Hood when in fact he’s more like the Sheriff of Nottingham"
A senior London-based investment banker on Branson’s Virgin Group’s plans to ‘save’ Northern Rock

"You want to know how most hedge fund managers are doing right now? Take a look at their faces. The bloodshot eyes, haggard features... They look like they are constantly dealing with a hangover"

A New York lawyer’s remarks on how the market is taking its toll

"95 is the new par"

A leveraged finance banker sums up the current fashion in the loan market

"This year will see a change in the most popular form of LBO exit to... insolvency"

A wag takes a dim view of the LBO market’s fortunes

"If you look at Merrill Lynch and Citi, the fatal mistake they made... I mean, the near fatal mistake they made... well, actually it’s still very open whether it’s fatal or not... was that they couldn’t control the creation of a CDO monster..."

A senior banker trips over his tongue when drawing similarities between Merrill Lynch and Citi

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