Monday, March 10, 2008

Blackstone loses $170m, Schwartzman regrets expensive birthday party

Actually only the first half of the headline is true.  Blackstone Group really did lose $170 million last quarter but I doubt if Steve Schwartzman regrets spending $3 million on his 60th birthday party, the highly publicized event on 2/13/2007 that curiously marked the end of the private equity boom.  Why do the earnings of the private equity group even matter?  Because its lousy earnings are a proxy for all private equity earnings.  Lousy earnings coupled with an impossibly difficult deal environment translate into fewer deals which lead to less business for Wall Street.  Less business for brokers means less fee revenue to help offset all the write-downs they have to take on their inventory.  This does not bode well for the quick recovery in bank earnings that most chipper analysts were expecting due to the fed interest rate cuts...  

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