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ANR: Former Citi Accountant Accused of $19 Million Embezzlement; Mortgage-interest Deduction Gets More Scrutiny; Audit Committees Snooping Around Comp | 06.28.11

~ Good morning capital market servants. I’ll be traveling this morning to an undisclosed location, so posting my be on the lighter side until later this afternoon. That should give you plenty of time to either A) determine my whereabouts or B) dig up some dirt and send it to us. If you manage to sniff out my trail correctly, your reward will be a hot date with either Adrienne or DWB, depending on your preference.

Former Citigroup Accountant Accused of Embezzling $19.2 Million [NYT]
Gary Foster toiled away as a midlevel accountant in Citigroup’s Long Island City back office, collecting around a $100,000 paycheck last year. But federal prosecutors claim Mr. Foster gave himself a bonus fit for a star investment banker by embezzling more than $19.2 million from Citi before its auditors picked up on the scheme.

Siemens CFO Says Tailwind From Recovery Is Likely Over [WSJ]
“The tailwind from the economic recovery is likely over. Now, increased efforts are required for continued growth,” Siemens Chief Financial Officer Joe Kaeser told analysts at an event in Shanghai. Kaeser has already said several times that growth will slow in the second half of the current fiscal year 2011, which ends in September, as the comparison base gets tougher.

Lululemon eyes $1 billion in revenue [Reuters]
While Lululemon’s sales have soared along with its share price, investors have been concerned that competition might start to slow its ascent. “We’re not feeling it or seeing it on a global basis or even store by store,” Chief Financial Officer John Currie told the Reuters Global Consumer and Retail Summit on Monday, when the stock hit an all-time high. “But you know, it’s a competitive marketplace. So, the next competitor … we have to worry about them just like we do about Nike and Adidas.”

Fed policymaker: Mortgage-interest deduction can be bad incentive [The Hill]
Narayana Kocherlakota, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, said in a speech in Big Sky, Mont., that the tax code now provides both taxpayers and financial institutions incentives to carry at times excessive debt. Kocherlakota, currently a member of the policy-making Federal Open Market Committee, specifically singled out the mortgage-interest deduction and a policy that allows banks to deduct interest payments on debt.

Los Angeles Dodgers File For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, Seek Television Deal [Bloomberg]
The Los Angeles Dodgers filed for bankruptcy protection after Major League Baseball rejected a television deal with News Corp. (NWS)’s Fox Sports, leaving team owner Frank McCourt unable to make payroll this week. Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig last week said the 17-year TV-rights deal, which McCourt valued at about $3 billion, would harm the franchise in the long term. Baseball took over the Dodgers’ business operations about two months ago.

Negotiators Wrangle on Taxes [WSJ]
With time running short to reach a deal to avoid a government default, President Barack Obama met privately Monday with Senate leaders in hopes of resolving an impasse over whether to include tax increases in a deficit-reduction agreement. The White House argued that the deficit can’t be significantly cut without eliminating tax breaks for certain wealthy individuals and companies, while Republicans said doing so would cripple the economy.

Audit Comittees Dig Into Compensation [CFOJ]
A new rule requiring companies to disclose whether their compensation structures could lead to excessive risk-taking has so far failed to result in significant new disclosures. However, the rule has forced audit committee board members to work more closely with their compensation committee counterparts and may result in more members serving on both in the future.

Posted in ANR