Texas Pacific Group Capital (TPG) are abandoning the Blowhard & Bongley rescue. In the spirit of black comedy that now dominates the UK's financial sector TPG had this right of action written into the original deal should the Maestros in the Ratings Game lower B&B's credit worthiness.

Well, never an outfit to knowingly shun publicity, Moody's have done the trick. See? they can be hard, too. This is surely the death rattle for B&B in its current form.

But, meanwhile, the spotlight has turned (again) onto the Financial Services Authority (FSA). Many inquiring minds, most of them in the British Bankers Association, want to know WHAT THE ASS the FSA is going to do now about the short sellers who have infiltrated Moody's out of Crispin Odey's shop.

Unsubstantiated reports have BBA suprema Angela Knight alternately frothing at the mouth and plaintively asking anyone who will listen "Now who will protect the market from getting a false impression of the demand for our members' securities?" A spokesman for BBA member HBOS plc, commenting on condition of anonymity, said of the FSA Plan B "We weren't serious when we signed up for it. It was just a bit of a laugh, really. Expect Plan C presently."

For its part, having inadvertently carved a niche for itself with its recent disclosure regime as a friendly PR agent for short sellers (did the wicked, wicked Mr Odey get to regulators too?) the hour is upon the FSA to retool and let the word go forth that within their arsenal of regulatory devices are indeed the weapons of fear, surprise, and ruthless efficiency (the current one of three really isn't cutting it). The near fanatical devotion to the Pope and nice red uniforms cited in the new promo video below are mere nice-to-haves.

On the other hand, they need every assistance going.

Related articles:
Bungle bank
FSA imposes short-selling rules and rejects critics
Short sellers wager £60m that B&B stock will fall
FSA clampdown on 'shorting' of rights issue bank shares
B&B: Texas raiders in saddle at lender

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  1. "Cassandra" // 7/04/2008 05:17:00 PM

    Rawdon, Images of Laurel & Hardy's eponymous "Keystone Cops" undoubtedly spring to one's mind. But more interesting is the question of which Keystone Cops? Is it the bumbling idiots (linked above) or is it more nefariously neglectful seen here, perhaps cynically idiotic in a bungled attempt to insure London's primacy?

    The answer may be in seen in Geneva's real estate prices...

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