"Why Obama May Be Wall Street's New Best Friend" [CNBC] CNBC's Jeff Cox discusses president Obama—past, present, and future: "Candidate Obama was an anti-tax cut, pro-regulation, anti-big business populist ready to take on Wall Street and any fat-cat CEO who stood in his way. President Obama? A bit of a different story."
Citi Posts First Post Bail-Out Profit—Still Misses Estimates [DealBook—New York Times] "Citigroup announced quarterly profits of $1.3 billion on Tuesday, bringing its 2010 earnings to $10.6 billion, as the bank saw fewer losses on troubled loans. This is the first time Citigroup has posted a full-year profit since Vikram S. Pandit was named chief executive in 2007. Citigroup reported a loss of $1.6 billion in 2009, on top of a crippling $18 billion loss the year before. The bank has now turned a profit for four consecutive quarters."
A Fascinating Portrait of Hu Jintao [Wall Street Journal] "When President Barack Obama traveled to Beijing in November 2009, his first visit there, U.S. officials pressed the Chinese government to agree to a joint news conference with Chinese President Hu Jintao—a fairly routine event during meetings of world leaders. The episode illustrates the cloak of secrecy that surrounds Mr. Hu, who arrived in the U.S. on Tuesday for a four day visit—making him almost certainly the least understood of the world's major leaders."
Volcker Rule & Additional Financial Oversight Are Coming. Slowly. [Financial Times] "The biggest US financial groups were braced for new restrictions on their businesses on Tuesday after regulators met to discuss higher capital charges for 'systemically important' companies and a ban on proprietary trading at banks. The Financial Stability Oversight Council, chaired by Tim Geithner, Treasury secretary, was due to publish a study on the “Volcker rule”, which would prevent banks from trading for their own account, among a raft of new regulations."
Once again: Goldman Sachs, Facebook, and U.S. Regulators [CNBC via New York Times] "Just more than a week after Goldman Sachs offered its most prized clients a chance to invest in Facebook, the firm on Monday withdrew the opportunity from clients in the United States because of worries that the deal could run afoul of securities regulations. The decision is a considered a serious embarrassment for Goldman, which had marketed the investment to its wealthiest clients, including corporate magnates and directors of the nation’s largest companies."