Thursday, October 8, 2009

Rolfe Winkler, Reuters

Goldman Sachs has done it again, deftly navigating markets to maximize its own returns and leave others nursing losses.

The deal in question is a loan Goldman made to the troubled lender CIT. The loan was dressed up as a derivative, which means Goldman can extract payments it is owed outside of the normal bankruptcy process.

Nothing wrong with that; Goldman has made another great trade. But is the exemption it exploited worth closing?

At issue is the integrity of the bankruptcy process.

By calling a time-out on creditors, bankruptcy offers the opportunity to reorganize and rehabilitate troubled companies, which is often in creditors’ best interest. A debtor’s assets often have more value if they keep generating cash flow, if the company in question continues as a going concern.

But if certain creditors get to pick off assets when a time-out is called, bankruptcy itself may be undermined. Such is the luxury of holding derivatives, which thanks to a 2005 bankruptcy reform, are exempt from the automatic stay that prevents creditors fleeing with their cash.

Continued from link in Banzai7's Whats Hot...

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