Legendary investor Warren Buffett defended Moody's and other credit-rating agencies Wednesday, saying they shouldn't be singled out for missing a massive speculative bubble in the housing market.
"I was wrong on it, too," Buffett told a commission appointed by Congress to investigate the financial crisis. "I called it a bubble-ette. That was the wrong term to use. It was a four-star bubble."
Buffett, whose firm Berkshire Hathaway owns more than 13% of Moody's stock, was issued a subpoena to appear before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission hearing in New York. The 10-member panel is investigating accusations that Moody's and other rating agencies, seeking to attract new business from banks and brokerages, weakened their credit standards to give the top ratings to dubious housing-related securities that went bust.
"The picture is not pretty," said Chairman Phil Angelides, former treasurer of California. "From 2000 to 2007, Moody's slapped its coveted triple-A rating on 42,625 residential mortgage-backed securities. Moody's was a triple-A factory." By contrast, just four U.S. companies have a triple-A rating; Buffett's Beread more
In celebration of International Corporate Philanthropy Day, Moody’s is proud to recognize the philanthropic efforts of our company with several initiatives and dedicated communications throughout the week. Moody's CEO Raymond McDaniel
Moody's CEO Raymond McDaniel - Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Salli Schwartz - Global Head of Investor Relations
Georgios Mihalos - Credit Suisse
Georgios Mihalos - Credit Suisse
Okay. I think we're ready to begin. My name again is Georgios Mihalos. I'm part of the data processing and IT services team here at Credit Suisse. Our next presenting Company is Moody's Corp., and representing the company is Raymond McDaniel, Chairman and CEO. And I do also want to point out that right in the front row is also Salli Schwartz, the Global Head of Investor Relations. And without further adieu I will turn it over to Raymond.
Okay. Thank you very much. Pleasure to be here and I appreciate the introduction. I don't have too much time so I'm going to jump right into this. And I will probably have to either offer some very abbreviated comments on a couple of slides or skip over a few slides. So if you have any areas of particular interest that I don't get to, make sure to catch me in the breakout session.
Okay, our disclaimer language. I'll quickly provide a corporate overview, financial profilread more
Ken Mehlman, a native of Baltimore, Maryland, is a Member of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co, LLP. He oversees the firm's global external affairs activities, including corporate marketing, regulatory affairs and public policy, communications, and engagement with the firm and portfolio companies' key stakeholders. Before joining KKR, Ken Mehlman was a Partner at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer and Feld, where he helped businesses and individuals manage risk and seize opportunities at the nexus of business and public policy.
Ken Mehlman served as 62nd chairman of the Republican National Committee and campaign manager for President Bush's 2004 re-election campaign. Michael Barone, author of The Almanac of American Politics, compared Ken Mehlman's success to Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton's, particularly in their revolutionary approaches to identifying new customers and constituents. Ken Mehlman also served in high level positions in Congress and the White House, including as White House political director during President Geread more
Former Republican National Committee chairman and Bush-Cheney campaign manager Ken Mehlman has announced publicly that he is gay, CBS News chief political consultant and politics editor for The Atlantic Marc Ambinder reports.
"It's taken me 43 years to get comfortable with this part of my life," Mehlman said. "Everybody has their own path to travel, their own journey, and for me, over the past few months, I've told my family, friends, former colleagues, and current colleagues, and they've been wonderful and supportive. The process has been something that's made me a happier and better person. It's something I wish I had done years ago, but I didn't."
Mehlman was RNC chairman from 2005 to 2007 after serving as Bush-Cheney campaign manager in 2004. He also served as White House political director during President Bush's first term.
Mehlman told Ambinder that he had recently come to the conclusion that he is gay and was looking to become an advocate for gay marriage. He went public in part because he expected to be asked about his sexuality when it became known he was participating in a fundraiser next month for the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER), which is supporting a legalread more
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