Of late, the so-called "CDO problem" has gained the momentum of a minor witch hunt, seemingly intent on outing a flawed structure that has cost investors hundreds of millions - most notably an $826 million charge recently announced by American Express. However, market players who've remained close to the CDO universe see the "problem" as more of a simple case of sour grapes.

"My guess is [buyers at American Express] didn't know what they were buying," said one market source. "Somebody gave them a billion dollar allocation to go buy CDOs and they just went out and bought. When you call the Street and say I've got a billion dollars to put to work,' what is it going to show you? All the crap.

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