Friday, August 24, 2007

Bruce Wasserstein: "Expect Lots More Embarrassment"

BusinessWeek Sep. 3, '07 Cover Story:

Bruce Wasserstein is no stranger to the gyrations of Wall Street. Over three decades, the former co-head of mergers and acquisitions at First Boston and current CEO of Lazard has helped broker more than $250 billion in deals. National Correspondent Anthony Bianco asked Wasserstein about the latest market meltdown.

You've seen plenty of turmoil on Wall Street. What distinguishes this round?
Of course, it started with problems in the subprime [mortgage] market. To protect themselves from that exposure, banks pulled back from risky assets of other sorts. Lenders are waiting for existing loans to wash through the system and for credit spreads and asset prices to recalibrate. Panic followed—an undifferentiated, very unsophisticated panic that persists....More