oh dear: Lehman task 10 times worse than Enron, say administrators oh dear: Lehman task 10 times worse than Enron, say administrators
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    Default oh dear: Lehman task 10 times worse than Enron, say administrators

    Lehman task 10 times worse than Enron, say administrators
    Simon Bowers
    guardian.co.uk, Friday November 14 2008 18.29 GMT

    Adminstrators grappling with the European arm of failed investment bank Lehman Brothers have told creditors their task is "ten times as big and as complicated" as the unwinding of Enron.

    Speaking after the first creditors meeting, a team from PriceWaterhouseCoopers said they had identified more than $1tn in assets and liabilities which need to be accounted for.

    At the meeting, held behind closed doors in a conference hall at the O2 dome, lead administrator Tony Lomas told hundreds of representatives and lawyers who attended that he had recovered about $5bn out of a potential $550bn of obligations owing to creditors. A further $22.3bn of client assets had been identified, all of which will be returned to their owners.

    He drew a comparison with the administration of US energy trading group Enron, which collapsed in 2001, noting that some of his colleague were still working on unresolved elements of that administration.

    Lomas said the Lehman administration had already slipped behind schedule because of delays in receiving confirmation from third parties believed to be holding assets of Lehman Brothers International (Europe).

    "The balance sheet position will be north of $1tn and we've got a long way to go before knowing what the position is for creditors and, if there is a shortfall, just how short it will be," Lomas said after the meeting. "The prospect is that some creditors will lose money. How much? We can't determine that for a significant time."

    PWC has already identified more than 400 trade creditors to Lehman's European business, including Reuters, HSBC, Hewlett Packard, BT, the London Stock Exchange and Lufthansa. Even PWC is listed among those owed money by the collapsed firm, as are the Bank of England and the Financial Services Authority. Meanwhile, the list of trade counterparties contains about 6,000 names.

    About 100 creditors have applied for "hardship status" which could see their claims fast-tracked.

    Parent company Lehman Brothers Holdings, once America's fourth largest bank, was forced to file for bankruptcy protection in the US in September after investors lost confidence in the business and the quality of assets on its balance sheet. It had been one of America's most active players in subprime home lending and related financial engineering.

    The settlement of Lehman credit insurance contracts linked to the bank's bonds suggested debtholders could expect to recover less than nine cents in the dollar.

    About 1,500 Lehman staff in Europe lost their jobs or resigned as the bank went bust. A further 2,500, mainly at the group's Canary Wharf offices, became employees of Japanese bank Nomura, which quickly bought the bank's European and Middle Eastern equities and investment banking operations out of administration in September. Another 1,100 ex-Lehman staff have been kept on by PWC.

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    So, finally Enron is being mentioned next to Lehman - there is zero doubt now that some people will be going to jail for this - how the fook could company with fook all assets to end up owing $1 trln?

  2. #2

    I Am Legend

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    I had to read the guardian this morning - no telegraph - no times - no independent. There was no sun - though I would rather pokee my eye out with a rusty nail than look at the pictures in that rag.

    DimPrawn(may his soul rest in peace) put me off the daily mail. So I took the guardian. What a load of tosh! There was a total bollox article on baby P - then I had to read the "finance" section. For years the guardian has wanted to turn us into a nation of vegan park rangers who are at one with the earth. they will send us back to the dark ages.

    Alas this means they lose their objectivity.

    I must remember to take a nail with me to work next week......

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrilloPad View Post
    <guardian related rant skipped>
    "Lehman task 10 times worse than Enron, say administrators".

    Lehman did not fail because of the Guardian and it was not the Guardian who screwed lots of people out of what it looks like $1 trln. Direct your anger towards those who did rather than newspaper that may publish views that you don't share, their "crime" is like mild safe speeding vs mass murder.

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