Someone at the New York Observer deserves a medal for giving the green light to a Q&A between DealBreaker editor Bess Levin and hedge fund manager Jim Chanos. It’s probably the best thing we’ve read in quite a while.
Some highlights include:
- Was there fraud at Lehman? “We can quibble on a billion here, a billion there, but $150 billion? I have to think that fraud was involved. It wasn’t just bad business judgment.”
- Did Chanos invent hating Goldman Sachs when a Goldman partner knocked down a hedge row at his Hamptons beach house? “I did have a real issue back then and believed that the little episode was symbolic of a situation that would not have happened at Goldman Sachs perhaps 10 or 20 years ago. The concept that a Goldman MD would physically knock down property of a client was just sort of a stunning admission as to where their priorities were.”
- Who is to blame for the financial crisis? “I think it’s Jim Chanos, because as everyone knows, the shorts were behind all this.”
- Who is Chanos’s least favourite hedge fund manager? “Do you think I’m crazy? I’m not answering that.”
We know it’s kind of an internet cliche but this time it is true: you should go read the whole thing.