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Morning Coffee: Morgan Stanley banker refused to cut his hair for clients. Goldman Sachs’ new AI tool

A computer-generated representation of Saperstein's hair in the 1990s

We've all been there. The man bun, the locks, the unruly tresses that signify a person without curling tongs. But Andy Saperstein at Morgan Stanley appears to have taken it to the extreme. 

Even now, aged 56, Andy Saperstein has quite a bit of hair, so when he was in his 20s he probably had more than enough to let it grow wild and free. And this appears to be what he did. Bloomberg says that someone at Salomon Brothers, where he was then working, took issue with this and asked Saperstein to give his 'unruly mop' a taming for the sake of the clients. Saperstein didn't.

Instead, he left for Harvard Business School, which is presumably full of people buying a few more years of extravagant hair before taking up the scissors and brush. And after Harvard, Saperstein didn't go back into banking but went down the illustrious McKinsey & Co. route, where he met Jane Fraser (CEO of Citigroup) but more fortuitously James Gorman, the now CEO of Morgan Stanley, who took Saperstein under his wing and now has him in line for his potential replacement. 

Saperstein has long capitulated on the hair issue. However, he still has something of the teenager about him. One his preferred activities is the Avatar ride at Disney World: I love going there,“ he tells Bloomberg. "It’s the best ride. You have to try it.”

Separately, Goldman Sachs has developed an AI tool that doesn't immediately appear to have much to do with ChatGPT. Business Insider reports that the new tool is part of Goldman's now long-established Marquee platform, which makes its pricing and risk engine automatically accessible to institutional clients. It's called 'Visual Structuring' and reportedly saves up to two hours per trade. The tool allows clients to test out different varieties of options strategy using interactive charts that react in real time. "We hope that it's going to become a new language of derivatives trading over time," Chris Churchman told BI.

Meanwhile...

Now that it's not splitting out its consulting and audit arms, EY's US business will be making 3,000 layoff instead. People working in consulting will be cut mostly. (Financial Times) 

UK tech founders are finding it necessary to pay large amounts to attract coders. "Most [freelancers] wanted £1,500 per day [and] the only way that a bootstrapping start-up like ours with zero funding was able to get a developer in was by offering equity in the company.”  (Financial Times) 

Millennium's new Miami training program is opening to early career technologists with two to five years' experience. "What we're looking for is the deep understanding of technology, but more importantly, at least for me, is a passion for learning about financial markets." (Business Insider)

In a sign that it thinks the economy is slowing, Lazard just added two senior restructuring professionals. Sanjeev Khemlani most recently led FTI Consulting Inc.’s senior lender advisory practice; Reid Snellenbarger was a senior member of Houlihan Lokey ’s restructuring group. (Bloomberg) 

"I wanted to let you know that there was an attempt at blackmail against me on Instagram." (Tidjane Thiam, on Instagram) 

Barclays' shareholders want to know why Barclays' directors were so supportive of Jes Staley. (Bloomberg) 

The wisdom of crowds still applies to groups when groups are drunk. 'Alcohol levels that are sufficient to increase individuals' vigilance errors do not have the same impact upon groups. The decision process used by groups appears to offset the deleterious effects of alcohol upon individual members.' (Core) 

Saying 'thank you' at work will have a remarkable effect. (WSJ)

Tech jobs are as good as banking. "The highest paying jobs were so clearly in the finance sector for two or three decades, and now tech is really competitive with that — they’re kind of neck and neck." (Bloomberg) 

There's been a sudden eruption of mid-week, Wednesday afternoon golf, seemingly driven by work from home. (FT) 

A Kentucky man who threw a boomerang that flew back and hit him on the head has sued himself for US$300k through his insurance company. (SCMP)

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AUTHORSarah Butcher Global Editor
  • Sa
    Sarah B
    18 April 2023

    Oh dear. Death of a potential income stream

  • fo
    fourstar71
    18 April 2023

    That boomerang story was fake when it came out in ... 1996 🤣

  • ep
    ephemerist
    18 April 2023

    A quick snopes search suggests that the boomerang story (from 1996) is a fake: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/goes-around-litigates-around/

  • Fe
    Felon_Musk
    18 April 2023

    Sarah, it's already 18th April and April Fool's Day is already long finished. The article regarding the Kentucky man is fake news - see this article from Snopes: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/goes-around-litigates-around. In fact the SCMP article is the same old article referred to by Snopes which was published in 1996.

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