News

Credit Agricole Indosuez has filed a lawsuit against Royal Bank of Canada and three former employees who jumped ship to join the Canadian bank last month (see Whispers, ASR 10/15/01 p.4). CLO/CDO bankers Daniel Smith, Lee Shaiman and Michael Arougheti were formerly with Indosuez Capital, which is the Merchant Banking and Asset Management division of Credit Agricole Indosuez. A fourth employee who joined RBC, Ken Kencel, is not named in the filed litigation because he is a member of the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), but a complaint has been filed with the NASD. The NASD complaint is subject to binding arbitration instead of litigation, meaning that Kencel's case has to be addressed in an arbitration scenario.

Indosuez has about six Moody's-rated CDOs outstanding. According to IFR Asset-Backed Securities, several CDO investors were furious that the employees, who were key personnel associated with the Indosuez CDOs, suddenly migrated to RBC. Sources say that investors' complaints might have been a prime reason for the lawsuit.

According to the complaint lodged in court against RBC, Credit Agricole Indosuez alleges that the former employees were planning their departure for many months while still on the payroll of Indosuez Capital, on company time. It also alleges that the individuals were using access to proprietary information and to Indosuez customers to give a competitive advantage to their new employer, RBC.

Breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty and tortious interference with contractual relations are also listed among the various allegations.

Ratings

Moody's Investors Service has assigned Baa2 ratings to Grupo Mexico Export Master Trust No.1. Additionally Minera Mexico's Ba1 rating has been placed on review for a possible downgrade. The ratings reflect concerns for Minera Mexico's weakening fundamentals as a result of the company's vulnerability to metal prices, reduced volume levels and upside pressures as a result of cost absorption on lower base and the potential for overall cost increases in running its business.

Last week Fitch announced that it launched Fitch Risk Management, which partners with Loan Pricing Corp. to leverage LPC's 10-year loan loss database with Fitch's credit rating analytics, and marketing/distribution channels. The risk management group will offer products and services incorporating "credit, portfolio and operational risk disciplines," the rating agency said.

Fitch also announced that it will begin assigning ratings to CDO managers. Standard & Poor's has also said it will also introduce CDO manager ratings.

People

Last week, Moody's Investors Service promoted Brian Clarkson to senior managing director. Clarkson will assume responsibility for all of Moody's Structured Finance business in the Americas. He will also coordinate Moody's business development efforts in Canada. Reporting to Clarkson are Noel Kirnon, group managing director, Credit Derivatives and Commercial Mortgage-backed Securities, and Andy Silver, managing director, Structured Finance. Also reporting to Clarkson in the Asset-Finance Group will be Managing Directors Ed Bankole, Pramila Gupta, Michael Kanef, Jay Siegel, Linda Stesney and Sam Pilcer. Reporting to Clarkson in Canada will be Andrew Kriegler, a managing director.

Additionally, all term ABS and ABCP managing directors, including Michael Kanef, Sam Pilcer, Ed Bankole and Senior Vice President Jay Eisbruck, will now report to Andy Silver.

Nissan Motor Credit recently promoted Jennifer Kuritz to the position of Corporate Manager, it was noted. This is a jump up to the management level for the former head of securitization. Commenting on the promotion Kuritz said: "When you become a manager at an auto finance company you are not handed the key to the corporate bathroom. You are handed the key to the corporate car wash."

Calendar

Nov. 13: New York, NY Information Management Network will host Credit Derivatives in 2 Venues. One will be in New York, and one will be in London. The date has yet to be announced for London, however it will be in the Fall of 2001. For more information, visit www.imn.org.

Postponed - Dec. 3-5: Palm Beach, Florida Commercial Paper will be presented by Information Management Network. For more information, visit www.imn.org.

Jan. 6-8: South Beach, Florida Commercial Mortgage Securities Association will host the CMBS Investors Conference. For more information call 212-509-7844 or visit www.cmbs.org.

Feb. 6-9: Phoenix, Arizona Information Management Network has rescheduled it's seventh annual Investors' and Issuers' Summit on Asset Securitization 2002. For more information, visit www.imn.org.

Feb. 10-13: Scottsdale, Arizona The Strategic Research institute has rescheduled its Asset Securitization 2002 Symposium. For more information, visit www.srinstitute.com

To have your event included in this section, please fax information to 646-822-4920, or, alternatively, e-mail to colleen.gary@tfn.com

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