Thoughts on The Vampire Squid Podcast?

Have you guys heard this guy's podcast? Do you think it is legitimate and helpful for understanding the financial services industry? Saw him on Business Insider the other day, Goldman Sachs TMT Analyst that recently left and trying to "increase transparency in finance".

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Comments (33)

Jul 21, 2016

Haven't listened to it, but I think I saw the same BI article. Isn't he simply explaining what IB is at a very basic level? I think most people wouldn't find it interesting. Maybe those looking to get into finance would listen.

Jul 21, 2016

Tried listening to it. A little flat and boring. But for the most part, we're not the intended audience because we already know most of the stuff he's talking about.

Jan 3, 2017

Bump, I think he does a great job for what he's trying to do - Wall Street 101. None of us do everything in finance so I've gotten good perspective on a couple topics.

Jan 3, 2017

European sovereign debt crisis - Goldman does a great job representing its client, top marks.

Tentacles in government - As one of the toughest places to work, and connected to everything, it's not surprising that so many talented people have joined/been created in the crucible that is the GS environment.

Accounting misrepresentations - you say it's worth $10, I say $20, let's make a market...

AIG bailout - AIG was selling insurance that it couldn't pay out on. Without a central clearing house, no one (not even AIG) knew how much exposure these guys had to CDOs, CSODs etc...

Corzine - "A Corzine spokesperson responded that Corzine "never gave any instruction to misuse customer funds and never intended anyone at MF Global to misuse customer funds"

Shorting what it's selling - In a huge office/offices there are going to be a ton of different opinions, trading doesn't have to abide by the analysts opinions, infact, they should form their own opinion.

Frontrunning & flash crashes - The argument that the algos are front running clients and double dipping on the transaction fee has been around for a while, that said, the NYSE likes the volume, especially when they were trying to sell.

Raj Gupta - As a former director of both GS and Proctor and Gamble, I'm sure that you equate P&G as a nefarious shady organization. Really, you say, "look, that guy, that one guy in ~60,000 (current and former) employees is an asshat, that must be an evil company". Sure, there's been some shady characters come from GS, and everywhere else too.

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Jan 3, 2017
overpaid_overworked:

European sovereign debt crisis - Goldman does a great job representing its client, top marks.

Tentacles in government - As one of the toughest places to work, and connected to everything, it's not surprising that so many talented people have joined/been created in the crucible that is the GS environment.

Accounting misrepresentations - you say it's worth $10, I say $20, let's make a market...

AIG bailout - AIG was selling insurance that it couldn't pay out on. Without a central clearing house, no one (not even AIG) knew how much exposure these guys had to CDOs, CSODs etc...

Corzine - "A Corzine spokesperson responded that Corzine "never gave any instruction to misuse customer funds and never intended anyone at MF Global to misuse customer funds"

Shorting what it's selling - In a huge office/offices there are going to be a ton of different opinions, trading doesn't have to abide by the analysts opinions, infact, they should form their own opinion.

Frontrunning & flash crashes - The argument that the algos are front running clients and double dipping on the transaction fee has been around for a while, that said, the NYSE likes the volume, especially when they were trying to sell.

Raj Gupta - As a former director of both GS and Proctor and Gamble, I'm sure that you equate P&G as a nefarious shady organization. Really, you say, "look, that guy, that one guy in ~60,000 (current and former) employees is an asshat, that must be an evil company". Sure, there's been some shady characters come from GS, and everywhere else too.

you work for goldman? i'd like to send you my resume

Jan 3, 2017

Surely you're not serious? You do know that an individual/third party usually has to act through a finanacial intermediary to buy equities (call options in this case).

Jan 3, 2017

The Heinz trades were just executed by GS. They weren't the ones actually profiting from them...

"My dear, descended from the apes! Let us hope it is not true, but if it is, let us pray that it will not become generally known."

Jan 3, 2017

I'm going long GS on the next pullback.

Jan 3, 2017
Jan 3, 2017

Classic Case of Schadenfreude. If you can't beat'em/join'em, hate on'em.

Understand that this is Goldman's World.

Jan 3, 2017

FundamentallyU, Sorry, I'm not a GS banker, and I'd still rather work for Jamie then Lloyd, but I just get tired of people using a very broad brush and a myopic strokes to paint a whole industry.

Listened to some douche say that everyone at GS should go to jail, he got mad when I said, yeah, even the janitors. Okay, so only some of the peopel at GS should go, he says yeah. I say, you realize that in a company with >30,000 employees, deal teams are comprised of anywhere from 5 to 20 right? So if one deal goes for shit, that's a one hundreth of one percent of the people at the company that are responsible for it. I didn't have to talk to him much longer.

Jan 3, 2017
overpaid_overworked:

Corzine - "A Corzine spokesperson responded that Corzine "never gave any instruction to misuse customer funds and never intended anyone at MF Global to misuse customer funds"

the guy admitted he misappropriated client funds. Too bad he's part of the TBTJ gang...

"And the last thing, how much do you charge for a career consultation and would you accept a check?"

Jan 3, 2017

A lot of those aren't all that specific to Goldman.

Jan 3, 2017

The big question is... so what?

Jan 3, 2017
lasampdoria:

The big question is... so what?

And the answer is .... never mind, you're right. Move along, everyone.

Jan 3, 2017

Most criticism against GS (and IB in general I'd say) is mostly out of some hidden envy or something similar. While IBs (and CRAs) indeed have their fair share of the financial+sovereign debt crisis, many populist politicians and media use them as scapegoat. The current crisis IMO is a fundamental/structural problem of the current financial/economic/political system of western economies (each has its own case of course but similar outcome/problem). Your "Golden Boy" was just doing his job.

FYI, the FX Swap that GS went into with the Hellenic Republic was, they say, for facilitating Greece's access to the eurozone, as some criteria of the Maastricht Treaty were not met yet. (not the EU, Greece has been a member of the EU since 1981.) The other reason which also seems very likely is that Greece wanted to hedge its FX exposure to the Japanese Yen, as it had issued bonds denominated in that currency, something absolutely prudent and fair to do. Maybe it's a combination of both? I don't know. What I do know is that most people who accuse so conveniently GS+Greece, don't know either.

Colourful TV, colourless Life.

Jan 3, 2017

OP quick correction regarding your statement that GS has been "advising" customers to buy certain products which, at the same time, GS has been shorting. The advisory business is very different than the market-making business. Charlie Rose interviewed Lloyd Blankfein a few years back, and Lloyd had to make this same distinction several times.

You need to understand that a good firm, a profitable firm, and an attractive stock investment can be 3 unrelated things. -Epicurean Dealmaker

Jan 3, 2017

[comment pointing out that OP's list isn't 100% accurate, thus allowing me to sidestep the main argument and the fact that 70-80% of it is, then pretending GS doesn't do a lot of shady shit]

Jan 3, 2017

People like to rip on banks, blah blah. But the reality is that without the infrastructure and products offered by these banks, our whole society grinds to a crawl. Complain about the housing crisis, forget that the invention of tranched MBS enabled billions of pension fund dollars to drop interest rates in the mortgage markets, enabling millions of people to buy more affordable homes. With the lower mortgage payments, these people were then able to buy furniture, groceries, travel etc... Money market funds, same deal, enables most big companies to carry on their day to day operations.

Think back to calculation for GDP, now reduce the velocity of money to 1 or

Jan 3, 2017

^ Gospel

Jan 3, 2017

^ Gospel

Jan 3, 2017

^ Gospel

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Jan 3, 2017

Nice article.

Jan 3, 2017

He is an asshole !
He will be appointed head of the NOT Federal Reserve.

Jan 3, 2017

Schatzker is a tool. Now Sara Eisen, that girl he's on InsideTrack with.. wouldn't kick her out of bed for eating crackers.

Jan 3, 2017

Did he talk about the GS twitter?

Eventus stultorum magister.

Jan 3, 2017

Well written hdavid. SB +1

Jan 3, 2017

Vampire squid is such a funny image.

Jan 3, 2017

Pretty certain (correct me if I am wrong) Goldman Sachs is one of the largest Bloomberg users in the world. Think of the conflict of interest there.... Its never in Bloomberg's interest to show Goldman Sachs in a negative light.

Jan 3, 2017
Jan 3, 2017

Eventus stultorum magister.