na
Posts: 9211
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 1999 3:52 am

Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:31 pm

Sad news: one of the richest Germans has comitted suicide by jumping in front of a train. Mr. Merckle, 74 years old, was, among other companies, owner of one of the largest pharmacy producers. It is said that he could not stand that he had lost one billion Euro in high risk stock exchange speculation very recently, which threw his business into a deepening crisis. He is reported to have a personal fortune of 12 billion, while his companies, which have approx. 100.000 employees, are indebted by 16 billion.
 
flexo
Posts: 344
Joined: Thu Mar 29, 2007 6:55 pm

RE: Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:40 pm



Quoting NA (Thread starter):
He is reported to have a personal fortune of 12 billion

From what I've read, not much of that fortune was left in the end. In fact, supposedly he was indebted by several billions. But the media might have gotten facts confused and personal fortune mixed up with company debt.

Regardless, this is very sad news and my deepest sympathy to the family!
 
Dougloid
Posts: 7248
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 2:44 am

RE: Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Tue Jan 06, 2009 9:48 pm



Quoting NA (Thread starter):
Sad news: one of the richest Germans has comitted suicide by jumping in front of a train. Mr. Merckle, 74 years old, was, among other companies, owner of one of the largest pharmacy producers. It is said that he could not stand that he had lost one billion Euro in high risk stock exchange speculation very recently, which threw his business into a deepening crisis. He is reported to have a personal fortune of 12 billion, while his companies, which have approx. 100.000 employees, are indebted by 16 billion.

I'd heard about that. He shorted Volkswagen stock and got clobbered when it went up. Classic speculator justice.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/f9557fac-dc05-11dd-b07e-000077b07658.html
If you believe in coincidence, you haven't looked close enough-Joe Leaphorn
 
na
Posts: 9211
Joined: Sun Dec 12, 1999 3:52 am

RE: Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Tue Jan 06, 2009 10:22 pm



Quoting Dougloid (Reply 2):
Classic speculator justice.

That he lost his fortune, is just. That he killed himself, not.
I bet there are hundreds of reckless Wallstreet sharks which before anyone else are responsible for the current situation and which created the playground for such speculations and which deserve that fate more. Any prominent banker killed himself in Manhattan? No? Shot by impoverished clients? No? Bet many of these ash.... have found a safe haven early enough and are cruising on their megayachts. I have a recent detailed list of the 200 largest yachts worldwide. Guess which job the largest group of owners have/had?
Speculators injustice.

Some areas of banking are nothing else than legalised robbery. A famous man once said so, cant remember who.
 
Dougloid
Posts: 7248
Joined: Tue Jul 05, 2005 2:44 am

RE: Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:20 pm

[quote=NA,reply=3]Some areas of banking are nothing else than legalised robbery. A famous man once said so, cant remember who.[/quote

Woody Guthrie:

The Ballad of Pretty Boy Floyd
As through this life you ramble, you'll meet some funny men
Some rob you with a sixgun and some with a fountain pen.

The Boll Weevil Song

Farmer went to the banker, to get himself a note
Said "get out of here, you son of a bitch, there's a boll weevil on your coat"
Gonna take your home.

I can appreciate your empathy for this fellow and perhaps I was a bit rude, but selling short as this fellow did was a classic risky speculative play. He did not need anyone on Wall Street to teach him how it works either, and the bind he caught himself in does not seem to have much to do with the worldwide economic meltdown, regardless of who's ultimately to blame.

Here's what he did. He bet the price of Volkswagen shares was going to decline, so he "borrowed" shares (in other words, sold stock he didn't have) in the belief that the price would decline and he could meet his commitments to deliver for a lot less than he started at. But when Porsche turned out to have more shares than was generally known, the price went up, and he would have to buy shares at the market price to meet his obligations.

Selling short is probably the second oldest profession there is, and it's what clobbered a lot of people in 1929.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/07/bu...siness/07merckle.html?ref=business

[Edited 2009-01-06 15:26:30]
If you believe in coincidence, you haven't looked close enough-Joe Leaphorn
 
JoFMO
Posts: 1840
Joined: Wed Jul 14, 2004 1:55 am

RE: Crisis: Billionaire Commits Suicide

Wed Jan 07, 2009 4:16 am

He threw himself infront of a train. My sentiments to the poor driver.

That is the upside with restricted gun laws. Instead of giving themself the bulled these guys jump infront of a train, and often enough traumatice the driver for the rest of their live....

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