From FT.com, Morgan Stanley is trying to raise cash to pad next months results. This past quarters results were essentially a loss sans the sale of operating assets. Morgan Stanley has few to no untainted assets left to sell, and the macro and operating environment is getting worse, not better:
Morgan Stanley, hammered by credit crunch losses, plans to sell half its remaining stake in MSCI, the portfolio analytics and equity indices company, for about $850m.
The move comes after Morgan Stanley boosted its second quarter profit with a $732m gain on a secondary offering of shares in MSCI, which went public last November. Morgan Stanley and other banks have been moving aggressively to raise cash after credit crises losses and declines in revenue.
Morgan’s second quarter profit of $1bn would have been essentially wiped out without one-time gains from MSCI and the sale of a Spanish wealth management business. I forecasted this back in January. This next quarter may be a doozy, and there very well may be a major bank failure in the next two quarters. Trichet will probably raise rates, which will make the marginal banks (nearly all of them) even sicker. I am looking very closely at the risk management of even more I banks, and if my investment thesis pans out I will push my bearish reach even farther and deeper. I will keep the blog posted.