Thursday, August 08, 2002

Snowball
Enron and Merrill Lynch details from the Times
Desperate to meet a year-end profit target, the Enron Corporation struck a sham energy deal with Merrill Lynch that let Enron book a $60 million profit in the final days of December 1999, according to former Enron executives involved in the transaction.

The executives said that the energy deal, a complex set of gas and power trades, was intended to inflate Enron's profits and drive up its stock price. Enron and Merrill Lynch, they said, agreed that the deal would be canceled after Enron booked the profits; it later was.

By allowing the company to meet its internal profit targets, the power deal unleashed the payment of millions of dollars in bonuses and restricted stock to high-ranking executives, including Kenneth L. Lay, then the chief executive, and Jeffrey K. Skilling, then Enron's president, former executives said.

The Times also has a long article detailing WorldCom's downfall -- as they announce today another $2 billion in accounting "discrepancies."

Meanwhile, the WSJ reports that Kozlowski stole at least $135 million from Tyco Adelphia-style (including $2m for a party for his wife in Sardinia), Qwest, Cablevision, El Paso announce quarterly losses, and the head of business "news" at CNBC resigns. Not that that will make a fucking difference.

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