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Shock and Awe, Then Criticism: The Firing of Preet Bharara

March 14, 2017

'Should Be Hung by His Heels' – Wall Street Analyst Dick Bove


Shock and awe – a term popularized during the George W. term in office - followed Friday’s requested resignation and Saturday’s firing of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara. Even Ken Langone, who served as a NYSE director and defended former NYSE Chairman Richard Grasso against NY AG Eliot Spitzer, had words of praise saying Bharara should run for governor or mayor.


But criticism quickly followed the shock and awe – very prominently from respected banking analyst Dick Bove. The equity analyst with Rafferty Capital Markets criticized the Bharara for using threats of criminal prosecution and other strong-armed tactics to elicit large settlements from Wall Street firms, hedge funders and other financial types.


"Preet Bharara in my view should be hung by his heels. That guy was an expert in doing this type of thing," Bove said, later adding that "this great guy deserves to be kicked in the a-- and removed."


Bove, a strong Wall Street defender, particularly believed that Bharara pushed too hard and impeded an industry the U.S. economy needs to survive.


[Financialish: Notwithstanding Bove's comments, which we believe to be true, It’s interesting to see how well so many Wall Street firms have managed to flourish, despite having had to pay out billions in government settlements. Of course, several Euro-banks continue to struggle under the weight of having to balance prospective multi-billion settlements against the uncertain prospects of earnings.]


In any case, change will happen and, like everything else, we’ll move on.