News & Events
The Barometer is smiling. Mr. Cohen, the trading rules are not your problem. Every single fund manager who was with you or formerly affiliated with your firm had top-notch training. Former SEC Chairman Harvey Pitt did some of the training for SAC Capital. Your training records reflected full participation by those traders and managers who were charged with insider trading. Your managers know the trading rules. The problem is culture. As a recent court decision and some dropped charges indicate, the traders had their toes to the line in terms of legality, but may not have crossed the line. The problem is a culture (more…)
Jonathan Burrows, a BlackRock fund manager for 20 years, has been banished from the finance industry by Britain’s financial regulator. The reason? Well, Mr. Burrows was commuting to work from the East Sussex to London — a one hour and 22-minute trek that should have cost him 21 pounds per trek. Instead, he boarded the train at a station that had no ticket barriers and then exited the train in London (more…)
Owner of a Jeep SUV that is under a recall for fuel-tank fires. The recall was in 2013, and involves 1.6 million Jeep vehicles, but there has been a lack of parts and other problems that have resulted in only 8% of the vehicles being fixed. Anthony Jewell, the owner, has his Jeep just sitting parked because he does not feel safe driving it, and, well, the quote of this noble man appears above. Mr. Jewell is correct in his mastery of the ethical implications of his situation. Last week, a woman driving a Jeep was killed when her vehicle burst into flames — the accident was 15 miles from Chrysler headquarters. Chrysler says that it has 461,000 parts on hand and stands ready, willing, and able to make the fixes needed.
Some people do the right thing even though not responsible for the original defect.
Note: the spelling error “conscience” vs. “conscious” in the Wall Street Journal‘s error, not Mr. Jewell’s.
With a hat tip to ethics expert, Jane Antonio, for getting this breaking news to the Barometer, we can offer this classic from one of the vice presidents at DaVita Health Care Partners in response to now former employee, David Barbetta, when he raised questions about the company’s referral practices. DaVita, the third largest company in Denver, runs dialysis clinics and was offering doctors leads and opportunities on joint ventures in clinics in exchange for referrals. DaVita’s patients are 79% Medicare and Medicaid, so Mr. Barbetta, troubled by the conflicts, quit his job at DaVita and blew the whistle to the federal government. Now he and his lawyers will receive 15-25% of the $389 million (more…)
The Barometer was strolling through the home section of a major department store. Tempted by Christmas potholders at 50% off, the Barometer stopped and soon planted feet firm to continue listening as three employees of this fine establishment conversed about their futures. The ring leader was explaining to the novice employees that after the new year begins, most of them would be going to part-time status because of slow sales, the economy, health care issues, etc. The two employees seemed crestfallen. But, their mentor would have none of it. “Don’t do it!” said he. “Get yourself fired because the money you make on unemployment will be better than part-time work here and you can get 99 weeks of unemployment. Plus, you are eligible for medical care through the government because you are unemployed. It’s a better deal. It is so not worth it to keep working.” This fine consigliore (more…)
Even the well seasoned Dillard’s manager was taken aback by this one. A customer brought in a pair of moderately expensive dress shoes, expressing a desire to return them because they just weren’t quite right. As the manager processed the order she checked inside the box to be sure that the shoes in the box were the shoes the matched the box – past experience dictated that follow-up on returns. The shoes were the correct ones for the box, but the customer had another issue. The shoes had masking tape on the bottom – masking tape that was dirty. When the manager returned to the customer (more…)