What a difference a few years can make. Initial public offering volumes are sharply down in Hong Kong, while some markets in Southeast Asia appear to be enjoying a revival not seen since the 1997 financial crisis. I have mentioned earlier in Money Post on July 2 that much of this is due, at least in part, to the shrinkage of deal flow from China’s giant state-owned enterprises, which has generated much of the steady fee income for IPO bankers since the mid-noughties. read
Banker bashing is in fashion. After all, the excesses and collapses of Bear Stearns, Lehman Brothers and RBS crystallised the sub-prime crisis in the United States and Britain. And blaming well-paid, banking executives for the woes of a long-suffering majority with “real jobs” is a message that resonates well with voters, especially in an election year. read
As I explained last autumn (read “How fat cats get the cream”), investment banks are complex entities, with many divisions and departments often competing among each other (but sometimes working together) to harvest fees from corporates and institutional investors.