Earlier this week, in a CNBC exclusive interview, Wilbur Ross, CEO of WL Ross & Co. noted that in the current tumultuous financial environment, private equity firms and buyout specialists may reap a rather depressing benefit--the ability to scoop up distressed banks at rock-bottom prices.
Will this sector of the financial services industry be a safe haven for those left holding pink slips? Unfortunately, the answer is probably not.
This week, as Wall Street was in tumult, the annual Dow Jones Private Equity Analyst Conference went on at the tony Waldorf Astoria Hotel in midtown Manhattan. Seeking Alpha called the scene at the conference positively “calm” despite the storms brewing downtown, though a survey of attendees did point to some pessimistic thinking: 64 percent of attendees agreed that the deal flow for the rest of 2008 will be patchy as the financial markets recover from recent events. How observant of them!