Would you buy a round-trip ticket on an airplane prone to crashes? How about a car with a history of serious brake problems? Interested in a TV that works great, except for the picture? If you answered yes to any of those, Citi has an investment opportunity for you. The bank is readying a new credit derivative, the CLX, which is basically a systemic risk insurance that will pay out in the event of a financial crisis. The basic premise is to allow investors to hedge against a spike in funding costs.
Goldman Sachs’ public relations chief, Lucas van Praag, used the word ‘chimera’ to describe recent press coverage of his firm which lately has been criticised for bonuses and its hardball negotiating tactics with American International Group Inc. In recent days van Praag has gone from company mouthpiece to the story. One could argue he bungled his job so badly that Goldman has had to retain the outside PR firm Public Strategies to rehabilitate its image.