Wall Street Is Shrinking
As the Occupy Wall Street movement gathers momentum and money, Wall Street itself is losing both. The swift collapse and bankruptcy of trading firm MF Global is testament to that, and—while like all unhappy families it has its own peculiar story—its failure is also emblematic of the spiral of declining profits that is rendering Wall Street a shadow of what it was just a few years ago.
It is tempting to make the failure of MF Global into a passion play of its high-profile CEO, Jon Corzine, former senator and ex-governor of New Jersey, and former head of Goldman Sachs. As Charles Gasparino noted, Corzine is a decent man with a stellar résumé and undoubted success in the world of business and politics, yet he has presided over major failures at Goldman in the 1990s and now at MF. His political career is equally mixed: yes, he got elected twice by the good voters of New Jersey, but he was then vehemently booted by those same voters who preferred the histrionics and no-b.s. demeanor of Chris Christie.
Should You Put Your Savings in a Chinese Bank Account?
In the middle of last month, the Bank of China quietly announced a startling new bank account available to America citizens. At one of three Bank of China branches in the United States–two in New York and one in Los Angeles–an American can walk in, open an account and convert their grubby dollars into the currency of the hottest, and arguably the most important, economy in the world, the Chinese renminbi.