In an interview during “Street Signs” Thursday, Pimco’s legendary bond investor Bill Gross described yesterday’s Wells Fargo capital security offering, which he said was worth $1.5 billion, as being one in which few if any institutional investors took part. Instead retail investors made up the bulk of the buyers. Cramer sat in on the interview, and later in the day, Wells Fargo contacted Mad Money to say that Gross was wrong.
“It was very much an institutional transaction,” Wells Fargo Executive Vice President and CFO Howard Atkins told Cramer. “I’m not quite sure it’s being characterized as being something different.”
Over 100 institutional investors took part in the transaction, which actually totaled $1.75 billion, Atkins said, adding that it was “successful” and “well oversubscribed.”
“We’re probably one of the few large banks these days that even has access to the institutional capital market,” he said.
The offering works for Wells in two ways, the CFO said: it’s tax deductible and callable in five years.
“If we don’t like the cost in five years’ time,” Atkins said, “we’ll call it.”
Cramer said he has been recommending these preferred offerings on Mad Money for some time.
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