Accounting News Roundup: Corzine Is Out; Freddie Mac Comes Back (for More Money); IRS Commish Wants Real Time Tax System | 11.04.11

MF Global CEO Jon Corzine resigns under fire [Reuters]
Jon Corzine has resigned as MF Global Holdings Ltd’s chairman and chief executive officer four days after the futures brokerage filed for bankruptcy protection, culminating a rapid downfall for one of Wall Street’s best-known executives. Corzine said his decision was voluntary and was best for the company and its stakeholders. “I feel great sadness for what has transpired at MF Global and the impact it has had on the firm’s clients, employees and many others,” Corzine said. “I intend to continue to assist the company and its board in their efforts to respond to regulatory inquited to the disposition of the firm’s assets.”

MF Global Masked Debt Risks [WSJ]
The activity, referred to in the financial industry as “window dressing,” suggests that the troubled financial firm was shouldering more risk and using more borrowed funds to facilitate its trading than investors could easily detect from the firm’s regulatory filings. This comes as it emerged that MF Global, which filed for bankruptcy protection amid questions about its bookkeeping and whether it had properly segregated customer funds, lobbied against a Commodity Futures Trading Commission proposal that would have placed tighter restrictions on how futures-trading firms can invest cash sitting in customer trading accounts.

Corzine Is Said to Hire Criminal Lawyer [DealBook]
Jon S. Corzine has hired Andrew J. Levander, a leading white-collar criminal defense lawyer, according to three people briefed on the matter, as the former New Jersey governor deals with fallout from the collapse of MF Global, the brokerage firm he has run since last year.

Report Shows a Mere 80,000 Jobs Added in U.S. in October [NYT]
Employers added 80,000 jobs on net, slightly less than what economists had expected. That compares to 158,000 jobs in September, a month when the figure was helped by the return of 45,000 Verizon workers who had been on strike. While job growth is certainly better than job losses, a gain of 80,000 jobs is hardly worth celebrating. That was just about enough to keep up with population growth, so it did not significantly reduce the backlog of 14 million unemployed workers.

Freddie Mac seeks further $6bn from taxpayers [FT]
What’s another $6 billion between friends? “Freddie Mac, the US-controlled mortgage financier, has requested an additional $6bn from US taxpayers, following a $4.4bn third-quarter loss, the company’s worst three-month performance in more than a year.”


IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman Wants a Real-Time Tax System [AT]
And I would like Padma Lakshmi to make me breakfast everyday. Can we both get what we want?

Boehner on supercommittee: Tax increases are out, revenues could be in [The Hill]
“I think there’s room for revenues, but there clearly is a limit to the revenues that may be available,” Boehner told reporters Thursday during a roundtable discussion. He added, however, that he was only open to new revenues if Democrats agreed to significant changes to mandatory spending programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. “Without real reform on the entitlement side, I don’t know how you put any revenue on the table,” he said.

MF Global CEO Jon Corzine resigns under fire [Reuters]
Jon Corzine has resigned as MF Global Holdings Ltd’s chairman and chief executive officer four days after the futures brokerage filed for bankruptcy protection, culminating a rapid downfall for one of Wall Street’s best-known executives. Corzine said his decision was voluntary and was best for the company and its stakeholders. “I feel great sadness for what has transpired at MF Global and the impact it has had on the firm’s clients, employees and many others,” Corzine said. “I intend to continue to assist the company and its board in their efforts to respond to regulatory inquiries and issues related to the disposition of the firm’s assets.”

MF Global Masked Debt Risks [WSJ]
The activity, referred to in the financial industry as “window dressing,” suggests that the troubled financial firm was shouldering more risk and using more borrowed funds to facilitate its trading than investors could easily detect from the firm’s regulatory filings. This comes as it emerged that MF Global, which filed for bankruptcy protection amid questions about its bookkeeping and whether it had properly segregated customer funds, lobbied against a Commodity Futures Trading Commission proposal that would have placed tighter restrictions on how futures-trading firms can invest cash sitting in customer trading accounts.

Corzine Is Said to Hire Criminal Lawyer [DealBook]
Jon S. Corzine has hired Andrew J. Levander, a leading white-collar criminal defense lawyer, according to three people briefed on the matter, as the former New Jersey governor deals with fallout from the collapse of MF Global, the brokerage firm he has run since last year.

Report Shows a Mere 80,000 Jobs Added in U.S. in October [NYT]
Employers added 80,000 jobs on net, slightly less than what economists had expected. That compares to 158,000 jobs in September, a month when the figure was helped by the return of 45,000 Verizon workers who had been on strike. While job growth is certainly better than job losses, a gain of 80,000 jobs is hardly worth celebrating. That was just about enough to keep up with population growth, so it did not significantly reduce the backlog of 14 million unemployed workers.

Freddie Mac seeks further $6bn from taxpayers [FT]
What’s another $6 billion between friends? “Freddie Mac, the US-controlled mortgage financier, has requested an additional $6bn from US taxpayers, following a $4.4bn third-quarter loss, the company’s worst three-month performance in more than a year.”


IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman Wants a Real-Time Tax System [AT]
And I would like Padma Lakshmi to make me breakfast everyday. Can we both get what we want?

Boehner on supercommittee: Tax increases are out, revenues could be in [The Hill]
“I think there’s room for revenues, but there clearly is a limit to the revenues that may be available,” Boehner told reporters Thursday during a roundtable discussion. He added, however, that he was only open to new revenues if Democrats agreed to significant changes to mandatory spending programs like Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. “Without real reform on the entitlement side, I don’t know how you put any revenue on the table,” he said.

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