Banking & Finance

Bailout helping PNC take over NatCityRestricted Content

November 3, 2008
Cory Schouten
After a 17-year run in Indianapolis, National City's trademark green signs are set to be replaced with the blue of Pittsburgh-based PNC Financial. The $5.6 billion deal raises questions about the government's growing involvement in banking.
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Market plunge makes investments in good firms a bargainRestricted Content

November 3, 2008
Ken Skarbeck
The stock market rout that began in September and picked up steam in October has taken some quality companies to prices that are the cheapest they have been in decades.
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Hospitals suffer from spiking bond interest rates, investment lossesRestricted Content

November 3, 2008
J.K. Wall
Indianapolis-area hospitals have suffered a double whammy of spiking interest rates on their bonds and heavy losses in their investment portfolios and are trying to save cash any way they can.
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Plan trustees under increasing scrutinyRestricted Content

November 3, 2008
Steve Wylam
Times have changed and now plan trustees must ask themselves, "Am I wiling to take the chair" and defend my actions, or lack thereof, in a court of law?
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Accounting firms preparing for new international standardsRestricted Content

November 3, 2008
Scott Olson
 For corporations with a global presence, the transition to International Financial Reporting Standards should streamline the world's financial reporting system.
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VIEWPOINT: Throw crooks in jail, fire dummiesRestricted Content

October 27, 2008
Mark E.
The $700 billion bailout of our country's financial system may be necessary, but it ultimately will prove useless unless real change is enacted to prevent a repeat performance of this fiasco. What the American people should be demanding is for someone to give them a clear explanation of what really happened to create the financial mess. Remember, after the market crash of 2000, the Wall Street research scandal (where nearly every Wall Street firm admitted to lying to clients through...
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For funding, developers may need to think outside box: Amid tight credit markets, getting a project built often takes alternative financing sources, creative approachesRestricted Content

October 27, 2008
Scott Olson
Although the spigot of bank financing has slowed to a trickle, money to fund commercial development projects remains available from alternative sources. Just ask David Amick, executive director of Premier Capital Corp., a local lender that uses federal funds to help finance expansions. "We've got money to lend," he said. "I've got that [message] hung on the door." The fragile credit markets have nearly diminished the ability of companies to borrow. But lenders such as Amick insist the money is...
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Ex-Lilly executives open 'trials' clinic: Centurion expects high demand from drug firmsRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Scott Olson
A new clinic that is on the cusp of conducting human trials in Indianapolis could distinguish itself as a key player in drug development, not only within the state, but nationally as well. Centurion Clinical Research LLC serves pharmaceutical companies and medical-device makers that need to test their products before they can be approved for widespread use. That first phase, in which healthy people are paid to participate in the overnight studies, is critical in determining the safety and success...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Lechleiter went toe to toe with Icahn to cut megadealRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Greg Andrews
Eli Lilly and Co. had been salivating over ImClone Systems Inc. for more than two years when, on July 25 of this year, its senior executives received a formal staff recommendation to contact the company and make an overture. So it must have come as quite a jolt to Lilly brass when, just six days later, Bristol-Myers Squibb announced that it was offering to buy the 83 percent of ImClone it didn't already own for $60 a share, or $4.5...
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EDITORIAL: Lilly looks forward with ImClone deal: CEO Lechleiter taking bold stepsRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Lilly looks forward with ImClone deal CEO Lechleiter taking bold steps It's premature to pass judgment on Eli Lilly and Co.'s $6.5 billion plan to acquire biotech firm ImClone Systems Inc., but the giant deal is one more sign that relatively new CEO John Lechleiter isn't afraid to make bold moves on Lilly's behalf. The local drugmaker agreed Oct. 6 to pay $70 a share for New York-based ImClone, maker of blockbuster cancer drug Erbitux, outbidding an earlier offer of...
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Nervous banks cut off some borrowers, tighten reins on othersRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Cory Schouten

Local companies that rely on credit have seen their borrowing power shrink and in some cases disappear as a deep freeze in the nation's credit markets drives fears of a broad economic slowdown. A handful of businesses, including a Greenwood security firm and an Indianapolis contractor, already have shut down after credit dried up, and others are on the ropes as troubled banks seek to limit their loan exposure.


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Turmoil thrashes regional banks: As economy weakens, big local players fight to keep capital, customers' confidenceRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Cory Schouten
A rush of government-aided acquisitions has bestowed a too-big-to-fail halo over the likes of JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup. But what about the formidable regional banks that operate more than half the bank branches in the Indianapolis area? How stable are banks like National City, Huntington, Fifth Third, Key, M&I and Regions? Their shares have endured a rough ride on Wall Street, but there's little evidence the ups and downs reflect the true health of the institutions....
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Arcadia banking on DailyMed: Company hopes product sales can help it escape debt, lift stockRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
When Arcadia Resources Inc. moved from Southfield, Mich., to Indianapolis last fall, the Indiana Economic Development Corp. crowed with pride. In exchange for incentives worth more than $6 million, the state had landed the headquarters of a publicly traded life sciences firm with more than 5,000 employees. Even better, the company was ready to launch an innovative new product that promises to improve home health care while simultaneously reducing its cost. A year has passed, but investors still aren't as...
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EYE ON THE PIE: Crisis pits fairness against urgencyRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Morton Marcus
As these words are written, we do not know what Congress will decide to do about the mortgage mess. But it is clear folks are angry about the inequity of rescuing borrowers, lenders or traders with funding from the pockets of the innocent. Among the "villains" are home buyers who took on mortgages they could not afford. Also marked for sanctions are over-eager lenders, highly paid executives, and those who dealt in "innovative" financial products linked to mortgages. Those who...
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VIEWPOINT: Think you can move fast? Look at ChinaRestricted Content

September 29, 2008
Jacqueline A.
This month, I am making my 50th trip to China. My first trip was in 1995 to identify a possible Chinese partner for a manufacturing joint venture in Nantong. When the potential partner honored me by serving a coiled snake as one of the main dishes, I thought, "What am I doing here?" But that's what change is all about-delving into the unfamiliar. Four years later, we had found a trusted partner, signed a joint venture agreement, located the proper...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Looking back in history to understand this messRestricted Content

September 29, 2008
Paul Coan
Where is the stock market headed next? It may help to look where it has been. My clients may have grown tired of hearing how the bull market of the 1990s mirrored the Roaring Twenties-maybe because they knew what came after the Roaring Twenties? You remember the history books and your parents talking about the Great Depression. The more articles you read concerning the recent market turmoil, the more this phrase appears: "Worst (fill in blank) since the Great Depression."...
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VC firm raises $116M for second fund after knocking first one out of parkRestricted Content

September 29, 2008
Peter Schnitzler

Thanks to hefty 35-percent gross returns on its $60 million first fund, locally based Centerfield Capital Partners LP has raised nearly twice as much for its second. This month, the venture capital firm closed on $116 million from a variety of investors. As before, Centerfield's 50 limited partners include major Hoosier institutions. But this time, numerous big banks, insurance companies and pension funds from outside state lines were also investors.


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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Ignorance, not greed, soured soup at Lehman BrothersRestricted Content

September 22, 2008
Mike Hicks
The collapse of Lehman Brothers and the widespread stock sell-off it engendered is a bit scary. It shows those of us on Main Street that more than a year after the subprime mess became daily news, significant and sophisticated financiers still grapple with the effect on their firms. They are now far less significant and sophisticated than they once believed. I'm still uncertain as to how this will end. The U.S. and world economies will emerge stronger, more vibrant and...
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City Securities' strategy: Stay true to your roots: State's oldest investment bank avoided Wall St. woesRestricted Content

September 22, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
In recent days, as some of Wall Street's most storied institutions teetered, the mood at Indiana's largest and oldest investment firm was almost serene. City Securities Corp. managers tracked news tickers and consulted CEO Mike Bosway, who was on vacation in Ireland, via his BlackBerry. But their biggest concern wasn't the financial underpinnings of their own company. It was tumbling stock prices, which depressed the value of the portfolios of their 15,000 clients. Bosway saw no need to rush home...
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Tough economy touching all industries, but some are hurting more than othersRestricted Content

September 22, 2008
Anthony Schoettle, Cory Schouten

Stock markets are falling, jobs are disappearing, and the outlook for the economy seems grim. Banks, real estate developers, retailers and manufacturers are taking the worst hits, but all types of businesses in central Indiana are hurting. From health care to technology, education to philanthropy, every industry is trying to take the setbacks in stride.


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Experts: Building boom not over: Big projects wind down, but new ones fill pipelineRestricted Content

September 8, 2008
Scott Olson
The completion of $2 billion in city construction projects has left a gaping hole in contractor job schedules-as wide as when the roof opens at Lucas Oil Stadium. Even so, industry leaders remain optimistic about staying busy despite the combination of a tepid economy and the end of a local boom that stretched the limits of the labor pool. The $1.1 billion airport midfield terminal project, the $715 million stadium and $150 million Central Library expansion helped to create so...
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VIEWPOINT: Advancing manufacturing is key to futureRestricted Content

September 1, 2008
Joseph Hornett
We've all heard it: Our economy is creeping to a crawl. Skyhigh oil prices, a weak housing market and the struggling U.S. dollar are discouraging consumers and business owners alike. Fears about our nation's fiscal health are shaking broader confidence in the banking industry, the system of global trade, and even our public image abroad. In the face of such adversity, it's helpful to remember that Americans have faced daunting challenges in the past. In tougher times, such as the...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Banker ready to make Salin a force in state's largest cityRestricted Content

August 25, 2008
Greg Andrews
Alvin "Kit" Stolen is back atop an Indianapolisbased bank, albeit one many locals have never heard of. But Salin Bank & Trust Co. has big plans to get noticed-and get customers-here. After establishing strong market positions in south-central and northern Indiana, it finally has its sights on the center of the state. For now, Salin has just one Indianapolis-area branch, its headquarters near Keystone at the Crossing. But plans are in motion for two Hamilton County locations. And while bank...
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Developer pegs Plainfield for spec office building: Local real estate brokers question potential demandRestricted Content

August 18, 2008
Scott Olson
Now a developer is banking on a new roadway and airport terminal to attract office tenants, although some brokers familiar with the area aren't sold on the idea. The local office of Chicago-based Verus Partners LLC finished purchasing 200 acres along the east side of the Reagan Parkway and plans to build a 60,000-square-foot, two-story speculative office building. Verus' mixed-use office and industrial park is called GreenParke at Airwest and could be ready for occupancy by next summer. Infrastructure work...
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Murky motive adds intrigue to Old National loan saga

August 18, 2008
Greg Andrews
In the buttoned-down world of banking, it doesn't get much stranger than this: An Indianapolis loan officer with a strong reputation is suddenly dismissed after his employer charges he falsified lending documents. The bank says the fraud exposes it to potential losses approaching $20 million. And here's the kicker: The employer hasn't accused the banker of committing the wrongdoing for personal gain.
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