Who Wants Neel Kashkari? PIMCO Does!
Just for fun, go to Google and type "Kashkari" and let me know what comes after. It's only totally hilarious.
Neel Kashkari, a former Goldman Sachs banker who ran the government's $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, has been tapped to head Pimco's new investment initiatives.
His appointment underscores Bill Gross' and Mohamed El-Erian's push to deepen the firm's products and services beyond fixed income, Pimco's bread and butter, and into equities.
Gross and El-Erian, who share the title of co-chief investment officer, also hired Franklin Resource Inc's Anne Gudefin and Charles Lahr to boost Pimco's push into actively managing equities.
Kashkari will be based in the firm's headquarters in Newport Beach, California. He will help direct the firm's expansion into new investment initiatives, including its equities business.
Gudefin and Lahr, who are known for their shrewd "deep value" approach in stock selection, are joining Pimco as global equity portfolio managers. They were co-portfolio managers of the $15.6 billion Franklin Mutual Global Discovery Fund.
OMG it's a conspiracy! Those PIMCO guys are trying to take over the world! Wait a second...
For the true LOL-worthy spin on this little tale, Pimco insists that Kashkari's experience with the government presents no potential for conflict. Kashkari should be used to this line by now since he was hatched in a basement on Broad St in the Goldman Sachs lair.
Asked about the potential for conflicts of interest of a former government executive and a private firm, Mark Porterfield, Pimco's chief spokesman, told Reuters: "Mr. Kashkari is bound by a non-solicitation agreement with various parts of the U.S. government by which he and PIMCO intend to abide."