January 23, 2009
Thain Craps Out
The news that Thain "resigned" from Bank of America is remarkable for its underlying text. First, why did Thain, a very smart fellow, give silly ammunition to those who want to attack his decisions. By buying a 35,000 dollar toilet on the company's ticket he gives an open option to those who want he out to embarrass him publicly. He could buy the toilet for his home and no one would have bothered him. Second, and more important, where are the lawyers who drafted the acquisition agreement? Apparently, Merrill traders accumulated losses after the deal was signed and before it was closed. Moreover, Thain pain bonuses to workers after the deal was signed and days before it was closed. Any decent acquisition agreement would have given Bank of America veto rights over major Merrill decisions from signing to closing. Why did BofA not monitor Merrill trading or Merrill compensation practice during this period and exercise its contract rights? Finally, we will wait to hear about Thain's buyout agreement and wonder about the TARP payment conditions that limit severance payments. Correction: I have been instucted in the comments that a commode is not a toilet; it is used to hold a camber pot.
January 23, 2009 | Permalink
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So your boy Thain craps out and yet BofA is at fault for not protecting Thain from himself?
Posted by: anon | Jan 23, 2009 10:22:44 AM
But the commode had legs on it! Definately worth the price of a 3 series BMW!
Here's a list of some of the necessities Thain had in his office...
Area Rug $87,784
Mahogany Pedestal Table $25,713
19th Century Credenza $68,179
Pendant Light Furniture $19,751
4 Pairs of Curtains $28,091
Pair of Guest Chairs $87,784
George IV Chair $18,468
6 Wall Sconces $2,741
Parchment Waste Can $1,405
Roman Shade Fabric $10,967
Roman Shades $7,315
Coffee Table $5,852
Commode on Legs $35,115
O ya, and he paid his personal driver $230,000 for a years work. Maybe I'll consider looking into limo driving for CEO's after law school.
Posted by: Mike Rosemeyer | Jan 23, 2009 10:39:02 AM
Can we (the tax payers) sue Thain. Over 1 mil to redecorate an office is one thing. 35 grand in tax payer dollars for a crapper is another thing. But doing this with the bailout money during one of the worst economic scenarios of our time is beyond me. There must be something we (the taxpayers) can do.
Posted by: Dave Jr2 | Jan 23, 2009 10:42:33 PM
He purchased a commode, not a toilet (chamber pots were kept in commodes in Victorian England, which is the reason for the association between the two). Most people today would call commodes “accent pieces” but I suppose if you pay $35,000 for an accent piece you want a French name to match the price tag.
Posted by: Beau Baez | Jan 24, 2009 7:35:42 AM