Sonntag, 5. April 2009

Pokerspieler schlägt Grossbanken

Andy Beal, a 56-year-old, poker-playing college dropout, is a one-man toxic-asset eater–without a shred of government assistance. Beal plays his cards patiently. For three long years, from 2004 to 2007, he virtually stopped making or buying loans. While the credit markets were roaring and lenders were raking in billions, Beal shrank his bank’s assets because he thought the loans were going to blow up. He cut his staff in half and killed time playing backgammon or racing cars. He took long lunches with friends, carping to them about „stupid loans.“ His odd behavior puzzled regulators, credit agencies and even his own board. They wondered why he was seemingly shutting the bank down, resisting the huge profits the nation’s big banks were making. One director asked him: „Are we a dinosaur?“

[…] [his] head of loan purchases, recalls salesmen from Countrywide laughing at him on the phone when he refused to buy iffy condo paper backed by the two agencies. „Countrywide, Bank of America, Washington Mutual … every single [mortgage seller] thought we were insane,“ Goodman says. „They didn’t know why we cared. They thought Fannie and Freddie guarantees were as good as Treasuries.“

[…] [credit agencies] never downgraded him but scolded him for seeming not to have a „sustainable“ business model. This while their colleagues were signing off on $32 billion of bum collateralized debt obligations issued by Merrill Lynch.

Quelle: Forbes.com – Magazine Article

Nun, eigentlich fände ich gut, wenn man nur noch als ausgewiesener Pokerspieler Banker werden dürfte … die beiden Tätigkeiten haben deutlich mehr gemein, als man auf den ersten Blick vermuten könnte. Erster weiss auf jeden Fall, wie man blufft und wie man diejenigen erkennt, die ebenfalls bluffen.

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