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Broker-dealer MF Global to realign priorities, reduce staff

Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Opalesque Industry Update - MF Global Holdings Ltd., a broker-dealer providing trading and hedging solutions, is rearranging its global Equities business and focusing on areas where it is at its strongest, namely commodities, financial services, consumer and global policy research.

Consequently, MF will reduce staff in equity sales, sales trading and research in Europe and Asia by more than 30%, according to a release issued today. And the company will enhance its presence in commodities and global policy research capabilities and the sales, trading and client facilitation activities to support these sectors throughout Asia and Europe.

MF delivers trading and hedging solutions across all major global markets; Commodities, Equities, Fixed Income, Foreign Exchange, and Futures & Options.

"MF Global has a long history of leadership and expertise in derivatives and commodities as well as strong global policy perspective that we gained through the acquisition of Washington Research Group in 2010," said Peter Forlenza, global head of Equities at MF Global.

“This realignment is part of the company's ongoing transformation to a commodities-focused investment bank,” he added.

As a defendant in a U.S. court, MF Global together with former veteran Moore trader Christopher Pia won the dismissal of claims that they had conspired with hedge fund Moore Capital to fix prices on platinum and palladium futures contracts in 2007-2008, Reuters reported on Sept. 13th, 2011.

The firm raised controversies in August when it announced a $300m underwritten public offering of senior unsecured debt subject to market conditions and other factors. The "Key Man Event" clause in the bonds’ prospectus promised additional compensation for investors who buy the company’s bonds with an interest-rate bump if its Chairman and CEO Jon Corzine accepts a job in Washington as part of President Barack Obama’s team (see Opalesque article). No news of him taking such a job so far, but we heard two weeks later that Corzine had bought 18,800 shares of MF on at an average price of $5.25 a share.
B. Gravrand

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