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Cost Allocations. The Gordian Knot of Operations.

Who should pay? What is my allocation and why? This is a really difficult topic. Firstly, because although it is about numbers it is not about math, there is not an absolutely right answer. Secondly, because it is pretty much unheard of to have a situation of harmony and contentment around this. Banking generally and […]

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When in Rome: How not to establish a presence in a foreign country

The phrase “when in Rome” is most often used to describe how one ought to adapt to local norms and culture. Years ago, a good friend from days on the Salomon Brothers training programme coined a spoof on this: “When in Rome, drive like a Parisian”, no doubt alluring to the fact that inside every […]

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Costs: what to legitimately count when figuring out the costs

What’s the cost? Last week, I offered some thoughts on being clear what are true benefits when you have an idea costs. To set the frame of reference, let’s think about an airline. If you can sell all the seats at full price, then happy days. Now imagine that once that is not the case […]

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Cost savings: what to legitimately count when figuring out the benefits

What’s the benefit? Quantify the savings! Both well known chants in our industry and in other industries. Benefits have to be quantified. Fair enough. Quite often, as in many things in the financial services industry, I have seen some math that just does not stand up to much scrutiny, both in terms of reflecting genuine […]

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More Muppet Show Adventures: Private Bankers being led down the garden path

With the Olympics almost upon us in London, it seems appropriate to have a Muppet team award. This goes out to the private bankers at Credit Suisse for their tri-athlon performance on behalf of their clients in matters structured products in the holy church of open architecture. (Editor’s note: I was at CS when these […]

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The Muppet Show: the correct use of the term in the banking world

Kiss & Tell at Goldman Sachs! With the joke about doing God’s Work getting a little old, one Greg Smith has done himself and the gossip columns a favour with that rather stinging and public resignation letter. Now first off, as best I can tell he was not badly treated at Goldman and did not […]

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Process control. The advanced class.

Editor’s Note: This is﹟7 in the series on Controls. All that heading stuff looks a bit funny in the emails, so I have dropped it. More. Yes, there’s more. Last week’s blog looked at the three basic elements of good process controls: One Screen, Score and Action. This week we will take it to the […]

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