Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Blue Pill Accounting At ACA Hits The Wall......

I suggest to read this post from July first ACA Capitals "Preferred Measurements Of Income" or "Blue Pill Accounting" & this from just a few days ago ACA "Hypothetical Speaking....." . In hindsight lots of comments from management, rating agencies & analysts are looking like they really live in the Matrix....... Amazing! Maxedoutmama has also a very good summary on ACA Hell's Bells Ringing On Wall Street

Ich empfehle im Vorwege dieses Post vom Juli ACA Capitals "Preferred Measurements Of Income" or "Blue Pill Accounting" und dieses von vor einigen Tagen ACA "Hypothetical Speaking....." zu lesen um deutlich zu machen wie planlos sowohl das Management, die Ratingagenturen und selbstredend auch die Analysten durch die Welt laufen...... Maxedoutmama hat eine weitere erstklassige Umschreibung zu diesem Thema Hell's Bells Ringing On Wall Street

ACA hits trouble - squared FT
More bad news from the world of structured finance. Lancer Funding II - a $1bn CDO squared - has entered an “event of default”, making it the first CDO squared to hit the wall.

CDO squared are, like the name suggests, CDOs of CDOs
. A CDO squared defaulting then, is perhaps significant, since it acts as a litmus test for the broader CDO universe.

And Lancer is also part of a bigger grim picture at ACA Capital, its management company. They reported their Q3s on Monday and joined the banking big-league with a $1.7bn writedown. ACA are a big manager of CDOs and also a leading provider of CDO default insurance policies - which strikes us a pretty shortsighted combination.

Considering that ACA’s prime line of business is in structured finance, a $1.6bn writedown is hardly surprising, but it’s still worthy of note for several reasons:

Firstly, relative to ACA’s size, it’s a very big hit.

Secondly, the writedown ACA has taken may yet be a lot worse. The main cause for concern here is the fact that ACA’s Q3 results only cover the period up to September 30. And the very worst month for CDOs was October. Testament to that the fact that Lancer has now entered an event of default.


And thirdly, as a monoline insurer, ACA’s problems are not just ACA’s problems. The security of their insurance - on billions of dollars of CDO paper - is dependent on the safety of ACA’s own rating. And in the light of such a big writedown and the prospect of more trouble ahead, S&P has put the group on review.

ACA has been used as a “dumping ground” by subprime securitizers says Barrons, and that might now come back to haunt them. Wall Street does indeed seem keen to prop ACA up. According to filings with the SEC, a consortium of banks has provided liquidity facilities to the company. In spite of disastrous performance, banks have also continued to take out ACA insurance, unwilling perhaps, to pull the rug from under ACA’s feet.

Barrons

ACA has long been a convenient dumping ground in which major subprime securitizers like Bear Stearns (BSC), Citigroup (C), Merrill Lynch (MER) and some 25 other prominent dealers could pitch billions of dollars of risky obligations for modest premiums.

That let them gussy up their balance sheets and shift any potential mark-to-market hits to ACA.If ACA Capital were to founder, more than $69 billion worth of CDOs, including the $25 billion in subprime paper, would come rumbling back to the Wall Street banks, and likely with heavy attendant losses.That's why Wall Street has continued to do a brisk business with the beleaguered firm.

In the third quarter, ACA insured some $7 billion of subprime collateralized-debt obligations. Even if the company survives for only another couple of quarters, that would stave off the recognition of billions of dollars of losses.

All of this, of course, is immaterial, because October has happened and its presumably now just a question of time before ACA ‘fesses up to the damage already done. Little wonder that the company’s share price has just gone down and down and down. It stopped just short of collapsing through the dollar mark on Tuesday at $1.09.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Edgar said...

And the game continues...

6:13 AM  
Blogger jmf said...

And most markets are still up YTD......

6:18 AM  
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9:52 AM  

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