Tales From The Beat: The Bankruptcy Of American Airlines

  • Tales from the Beat: Gordon Bethune
  • Tales from the Beat: Robert L. Crandall
  • Tales from the Beat: Herbert D. Kelleher
  • Turning up: Tales from the Beat
  • It wasn’t just a two-year story, from the filing on Nov. 29, 2011, to the day its plan of reorganization took impactworked, Dec. 9, 2013. The build-up to it took a variety of years, and one could argue it goes on today as American Airlines Group continues to execute its merger with United States Airways, a key part of the plan of reorganization.

    Although I initially started on the aviation beat at the Dallas Morning News on Oct. 1, 1990, it can be found in three stints. The last started July 12, 2006. From that point, a significant part of covering American was its persistent losses and its deteriorating relationship with its unions, most noticeably the Allied Pilots Association. The labor-management relationship wasnt assisted by huge awards of stock that supervisors got while rank-and-file staff members worked under concessions removed in early 2003.

    What I was learning through mid-2011 onwards was that the AMR board was pressing leading executives to obtain an offer with the pilots, amid a growing belief that it was ineffective and the airline was going to need to submit Chapter 11 papers to get its costs down.

    In early November 2011, I had a most uncommon meeting. A leading AA executive and a top APA official called me to a secret meeting, simply the three people. The message was that it was extremely vital for the pilots and airline to obtain an offer or something bad may veryeffectively take place.

    Okay, it soon ended up being clear what they were indicating. AMR would submitapply for bankruptcy if there wasn’t a union contract fast. However they wouldn’t say so. They only stated that the airline would be compelled to take steps, without stating what those steps might be.

    It also ended up being clear that they wanted me to conclude that a bankruptcy filing was coming, without that conclusion coming out of their mouths. For that reason, when the financial markets moved because of my report or pilots responded terribly to the pressure, it wouldn’t be their fault.

    My response to them was that it depended on them to say it if that was exactly what they wanted reported, that they must take more responsibility for what would be a disastrous story. They would not doing this.

    In mid-November, the pilot union’s board declined the business’s last offer. Union authorities recommended that the two sides were close which an offer was possible. However management and the AMR board understood it indicated the airline company wasn’t getting an appropriate offer.

    When I arrived house from work around 7 pm Monday, Nov. 28, 2011, I returned to the master restroom to alter from my work clothes. Before doing so, I inspected my e-mail to see if anything had actually been available in since I left work.

    “I hear that there’ll be a huge statement tomorrow,” an AA worker at DFW airport had actually written me, “but I make sure you knew that.”

    I didn’t know of any huge statement. The rulegeneral rule is that if AA tells me there’s going to be a big announcement, it will not be big. If there’s an announcement coming and American didn’t tell me, it’ s likely to be extremely big.

    With the possibility of bankruptcy looming, I began working the story. I called a couple of people in American’s business interactions workplace. No one understood anything, or would confess that they understood anything. One stated she had been told to report early to the workplace – really early, like prior to 6 am, however would state absolutely nothing more.

    Another one informed me that a stream of individuals had actually been entering into and from vice president Andy Backover’s office. I got some names of people who they had heard had signed non-disclosure contracts.

    I called one, a good friend, who became really worried extremely quickly when I stated I was checking out the possibility that American was preparing to fileapply for bankruptcy. I could virtually hear the gulping over the phone. He had actually signed a non-disclosure arrangement and would tell me nothing.

    So I asked him if my profession would be irreparably besmirched if I reported that American Airlines was planning a big announcement Tuesday amid speculation that it was preparing to go into bankruptcy proceedings. A long pause. No, my profession would not be damaged by such a story, the source stated.

    Somewhere around 8 pm, I called the office of AMR chairman and CEO Gerard Arpey. My theory: If no one answers, it suggests absolutely nothing. But if someone answers the phone that late in the evening on a Monday, something is going on.

    So I called Arpey’s phone number. After a ring or 2or 2, a female addressed. “Hello?”

    “Hi, this is Terry Maxon at the Dallas Early morning News. Is Gerard readily available?”

    Long time out. “Can we call you back?” she stated. Oh, sure! I offered her my cellphone number.

    I kept working prospective sources. Over time, I likewise encouraged the night editor over the Companybusiness section, Jeff Schnick, and Business editor Dennis Fulton, as the story tightened.

    Sometime between 8:30 pm and 8:45 pm, I received a call from an AA vice president. What am I preparing to write? he asks. I inform him I’m preparing to compose that American is planning a big announcement Tuesday, amid speculation that it’s going to submitapply for bankruptcy. I likewise said that I plan to hold it off the Web, off Dallasnews.com, up until Tuesday morning.

    Normally, the moment I discovered out enough to publish, I would put it on the Web. However generally when I’m working a big story, I come throughoutdiscover the tracks of other press reporters working the exact same story. In this case, I didn’t discover anybody. So for the last time in my career, I wanted to keep this exclusively in the print editions of the Dallas Morning News.

    I informed the AA VP of my plans. That might have helped the airline company’s choice to coordinate. Possibly a half hour later on, I got another call, this time from the exact same vice president plus a senior vice president.

    Okay, they informed me. You correct. American strategies to submit a Chapter 11 petition Tuesday morning in New York. We talked about it, and I nail down a couple of more information.

    Simply prior toPrior to I disconnected, I kept in mindkept in mind that Gerard Arpey had spoken up numerous times that he didn’t believe bankruptcy was the response.

    Exactly what about Gerard? I asked.

    Time out. Well, intriguing that you ask, they told me. Gerard has decided to retire, reliable Monday night. They guaranteed me that the board advised Gerard to stay, however he had decided it was best to leave. Tom Horton, American’s president, was selecting up Gerard’s titles of chairman and CEO.

    If I had not asked the concern, I would have missed out on half of the huge story. However perhaps one reason these 2 executives chose to call me back is so that the picture could be painted the method they wanted: Gerard left voluntarily instead of being pressed out.

    Well, if he states I’m going to quit if we submitapply for bankruptcy and the board votes to fileapply for bankruptcy, one can argue that’s a de facto termination. But it isn’t, too.

    In any case, the very first the outdoors world knew that American prepared to enter into bankruptcy was when the Dallas Morning News struck the streets (and yards) a couple hours before dawn on Tuesday. CBS National emailed me around 5:30 am and desiredwished to speak to me. Nothing was on the Internet yet, other than other individuals’s stories quoting the DMN story.

    I had actually gone to restfallinged asleep between 1 and 1:30 am and got up around 6 am, about the time AA and AMR were going into US Bankruptcy Court of the Southern District of New York.

    I had actually worked the whole story from my living roomliving-room loveseat. I later counted that it involved about 100 interactions, divided evenly between call, outbound emails and incoming e-mails. (By the method, I never ever changed out of my work clothing till I got readyprepared for bed.)

    One good outcome of the story is that my boy, then 18 years of ages, got to overhear his daddy work a huge story. It provided him a nice gratitude of how a reporter works as he goes from source to source tryingaiming to develop a bit of suspicion into a strong story.

    Our publisher and CEO, Jim Moroney, told me later on that he opened his paper Tuesday early morning and discovered for the firstvery first time that American Airlines was going to submitapply for bankruptcy which Gerard Arpey had actually stopped. He then opened up his other newspapers to see how they handled it. No stories. He looked at our story. “I hope we’re right,” he believed.

    Naturally, the filing introduced dual tracks of news. One was the bankruptcy case itself and the extended procedure of compeling unions to accept new cost-cutting agreements. The other, which started little, became an equally huge story if not larger – United States Airways’ pursuit of a merger with American.

    There were a lot of days where I went house when there were still things to compose. However it ‘d be 10 pm, 11 pm and I needed to choose that that was all I was going to compose that day.

    In the old days (pre-Internet), a reporter worriedstressed over one time a day – due date. It came once a day. You might get a late story into the paper, however there was a limited end to the day.

    The Airline company Biz has no due date, besides right now. So we had the merging of the immediate due date with an insatiable desire for information from airline employees, financiers and others for exactly what was going on in the American Airlines bankruptcy case and US Airways’ pursuit of American. Combined, that meant I felt a responsibility to compose as much as I could about exactly what was going on in the bankruptcy case.

    If nothing else, the experience gave me the opportunity to compose among my preferred leads ever, on the Airline Biz story that heralded the marriage of US Airways and American Airlines on a very, very cold day in December 2013:

    “Those who stated it would be a cold day in hell prior to American Airlines and United States Airways would combine got the weather condition right however the area incorrect.”

    Securities Lending Markets: The $3.4 Trillion Market Regulatory Authorities Still Cannot See

    Reference Overview of United States Repo And Securities Lending Markets by OFR

    Viktoria Baklanova,

    Workplace of Financial Research study

    Adam Copeland,

    Federal Reserve Bank of New York

    Rebecca McCaughrin,

    Workplace of Financial Research


    This paper is meant to function as a reference guide on US repo and securities loaning markets. It starts by providing the institutional structure, explaining the market landscape, the role of the participants, and other attributes, consisting of how repo and securities lending activity has actually changed given that the 2007-09 financial crisis. The paper then talks about vulnerabilities in the repo and short-term wholesale financing markets and efforts to restrict prospective systemic risks. It next supplies a summary of existing data sources on securities funding markets, and highlights specific shortcomings connected to data requirements and information quality. Finally, the authors talk about a near-term program to helpto assist fill some of the information spaces in repo and securities financing markets.

    Reference Overview of US Repo And Securities Lending Markets – Intro

    This reference guide focuses on the marketplace microstructure, vulnerabilities, and data spaces in the United States securities funding markets, where companies transact using bought arrangements (repo) or securities financing contracts. Repos allow one firm to offer a security to another firm with a simultaneous promise to buy the security back at a later date at a specified cost. The financial result of this deal is comparable to that of a collateralized loan. Securities loaning involves a short-term loan of stocks or bonds in exchange for money or noncash collateral. The economic result of this deal can be comparablejust like that of a repo particularly in cases when a securities loaning transaction is collateralized by cash. Under current United States market practice, repos are mainly utilized to obtain money utilizing securities as security. Securities lending contracts are generally made use of to gain access to security securities utilizing money as security. Such transactions make it possible for firms to establish short positions, hedge, and help with market-making activity.

    The significance of repo and securities financing in the United States monetary markets is provened by their prevalent use. Although daily volumes in the repo market have declined considering that the crisis, they still overshadow the quantity transacted in unsecured money markets. Due to a lack of information, there is a wide varietya vast array of estimates of total repo and securities financing activity. For instance, total repo activity at its peak level before the 2007-09 monetary crisis varied from $5 to $10 trillion.2 In the present post-crisis age, our estimate of total repo activity is around $5 trillion and our estimate of the outstanding value of securities on loan is just under $2 trillion. Both repo and securities financing markets came under pressure throughout the 2007-09 monetary crisis. Gorton and Metrick (2012) and Copeland, Martin, and Walker (2014) explain various systems through which runs take place in repo markets, and Krishnamurthy, Nigel, and Orlov (2014) emphasize the function of collateral in propagating a run. In addition, Keane (2013) discusses the dangers connected with securities loaning and advocates for greater regulatory and market analysis of this activity. Coming out of the monetary crisis, regulators have concentrated on reforming practices in both repo and securities loaning markets.

    Wipeout: Quiksilver Files For Chapter 11 Bankruptcy In United States

    But the business still sees a future for its core Quiksilver, Roxy womens ware and DC shoe brands.

    It plans to continue in business and filed a comprehensive restructuring plan that calls for financial obligation holder Oaktree Capital Management, an LA firm that focuses on purchasing troubled companies, to become majority owner after leaving bankruptcy.Chief Executive Pierre

    Agnes said the bankruptcy plan is a tough but necessary step that will assist finish a turnaround of the business US company. The companies Asia-Pacific and European business units are not part of the bankruptcy filing.In a statement, Agnes stated the bankruptcy and funding from Oaktree will allow the business to please our continuous responsibilities to clients, vendors and workers and reestablish Quiksilver as the leader in the action sports market.

    Hamptons Bus Service Files For Bankruptcy

    Labor Day has actually reoccured, however right here’s another indicator summer is over: a bus company that transported Manhattanites to the Hamptons has actually filed for bankruptcy.

    The business behind the Hampton Luxury Liner filedapplied for chapter 11 security Tuesday, citing cash-flow problems brought on by Cyclone Sandy. The bus company states in court papers that it lost more than $1.5 million as an outcome of the 2012 superstorm, leading to its eventual default on its loans. Its last forbearance contract is set to expire at the end of the year, and efforts to refinance resulted in the company handling a loan with an interest rate, fees and costs that it says may amount to usury.

    As an outcome of its difficulties, the business states it was “left with no choice but to file the immediate chapter 11 case to manage it the chance to restructure its debt in such a method that it may pay its creditors and remain to operate its company as a going concern.”

    Hampton Luxury Liner provides $45 one-way trips in between New york city City and its cherished summer trip area, the Hamptons, as well as Long Island winery tours. It promotes such contemporary amenities as free Wi-Fi, a library, reclining leather seats, personal power outlets, complimentary treats and water and flat-screen televisions revealing films. According to a 2012 New york city Times review of Hamptons bus alternatives, Hampton Luxury Liner is for “socialites, boldface New Yorkers and any individual else who doesn’t want to be interrupted by an onboard attendantor you, for that matter.”

    The business reported possessions of $6.6 million and financial obligations of $5.1 million in its chapter 11 petition, filed with the United States Bankruptcy Court in Central Islip, NY

    Compose to Jacqueline Palank at�jacqueline.palank@wsj.com. Follow her on Twitter at�@PalankJ!.?.!

    Relativity Postpones 3 Movies Because Of Bankruptcy

    If Relativity Studios was a person, it would really require a hug today. As if their bankruptcy wasnt enough of an obstacle to any chance of continuing to be a Hollywood gamer, the studio has now gone ahead with strategies to get rid of three of their movies from their official release schedule. If you were anticipating The Dissatisfactions Room, The Bronze, or Before I Wake, then it looks like youre going to be sulking in the same corner that Relativity is using up in your regional film theater.

    Range reports that in anticipation of their bankruptcy auction on October 1st, Relativity has chosen to indefinitely hold off release on all 3 films. The main reason all three films were postponed is prettypractically the same factor that the movie Masterminds was pulled out of release last month: Relativity cant pay for to promote any of their upcoming motion pictures appropriately. Whats intriguing is that fellow Relativity release Autobahn is not mentioned in the list of films being temporarily shelved, though one would presume by this point that its just a matter of time prior to that takes place.

    If you readcheck out the details of Relativitys bankruptcy offer, though, theres another, more clear factorreason these movies aren’t being launched. According to formerly reported proceedings, Relativity Studios requireshas to repay the loans they got from financiers like RKA Movie Financing prior to any of these buildings can be offered and appropriately released. The final twist on the whole damned mess is the fact that the moneythe cash that is owed to Relativitys investors which is estimated at around $75 million was for marketing expenditures on their movies, costs that the studio has been implicated of funneling into keeping their own doors open for a little while longer.

    The greatest losers of the fight Relativity Studios is waging are, naturally, the movies that were supposed to have their day in the sun, and the darkness of the theater, and the filmmakers behind them. The Disappointments Room was supposed to be I Am Number Four director DJ Carusos go back to showcase films, and both The Bronze and Before I Wake might have been winners in their own right. Though The Bronze was fulfilledconsulted with combined buzz after it debuted back at Sundance, and Before I Wake honestly resembled a late September non-starter. Well never know how well these movies would have done in their initial release windows, and itll be hard for them to leave the harmed goods track record theyve unintentionally taken on thanks to Relativity.

    Relativity Studios will certainly be on the auction block on October 1st. If youve ever desired to own a motion picturea movie studio, in addition to a starter pack of pre-made films, and have a couple of extra millions sitting around, nows your chance.

    CommonBond Draws In Another $35 Million For Its College Lending Marketplace

    Concerns over the student loan crisis in the United States continue to roil through the economy (even reaching into the campaign trail of the next governmental election), and progressively endeavor investors are wagering on startup companies like SoFi and CommonBond as prospective options.

    In the dog days of summertime the San Francisco-based loaning start-up, SoFi, handled to create a $1 billion round, which valued the business at $4 billion and put it among the top 40 banks by market capitalization, according to The Wall Street Journal.

    Now, the New York-based financing marketplace, CommonBond, has actually handled to attract a more modest– but still substantial– $35 million in fresh funding for its own development plans.

    The moves come as personal financing presumes a larger function in students’ mission to find cash to spend for college with stats like this one pointed out in The New york city Times:

    Personal loans stand for just an estimated 7 to 10 percent of the $1.27 trillion student financial obligation impressive, but new loans are on the rise. Lenders made $6.7 billion in brand-new private loans in the 2014-15 academic year, according to MeasureOne, which evaluates information from 6 loan providers and holders of personal loans, which jointly represent about 71 percent of all exceptional loans. That is up about 14 percent from $5.87 billion in 2009-10.

    All this as researches continue to reveal the importance of a college education to social movement, as data from the Brookings Institute demonstrates.

    With its new funding, led by experienced lending investor August Capital with participation from the New york city monetary services financial investment company Nyca Partners, CommonBond will aim to expand its headcount and lay the foundationprepared for its entrance into other markets.

    Like other start-up lenders, CommonBond sees its preliminary focus on a particular segment of the population– in this case, at its creation, university student seeking expert degrees– as a gateway to selling other financial products.

    From its base in downtown New york city on the border of Chinatown and the Financial District, CommonBond’s 35 staff members are laying the foundation for a broader marketplace lending platform.

    The Problem Behind The Home Rental Boom

    Is renting a picket fence the new American Dream?

    Youve most likely seen the variety of reports just recently confirming that homeownership is on the decline around the country a trend started throughout the Great Economic downturn that has actually not altered during the recuperation. The Census Bureau reported last month that the share of homeowners in America dropped to its least expensive level since 1967 because before human beings walked on the moon!

    This is not great news for occupants. The more competitors for rental units, the greater the prices. Zillow reported recently that rental costs were up 4.3 % in June year over year, resulting in this disappointing proclamation by Zillows chief economist Stan Humphries: Leas are remarkably expensive on a historical basis in the United States today. Rent increases are far exceeding wage increases.

    When rents increase like this, renters typically turn to buying houses. Home loans provide one clear benefit over renting: taken care of month-to-month payments. However housing costs are increasing in many markets too, and the for-sale stock is shrinking, Zillow says, implying there aren’t lots of home deals out there either.

    The compromise between renting an apartment and buying a house is leasing a single-family house. Thats traditionally a choice made by only a little number of Americans, but one of the trends-within-a-trend in the real estate market is an incredible surge in families doing just that. Right here are some startling numbers from a current report published by the Joint Center for Real estate Studies at Harvard University.

    lsquo; Unprecedented Change

    Throughout the 1990s, single-family homes for lease grew at approximately 73,000 systems yearly. Pre-recession, development jumped to 138,000. When the economic downturn hit, that number rose to 513,000 each year. Add everything up, and one hidden effect of the housing bubble burst is 3.2 million more American families lease their single-family house, instead of having a figure that represents nearly half the jump in all rentals post-recession.

    The recent growth of single-family rentals is extraordinary, the Harvard report states.

    A few of the reasons for this are apparent, some less so. Many Americans struck by the economic crisis could no longer afford their residence payments, or were no longer able to get home loans since of bad credit scores or restricted earnings. Renting single-family, removed homes ended up being an attractive alternative for this group. Also, single-family housing construction tasks begun during the real estate bubble became tough to sell when the bubble burst. Home builders hurried to transform them to rental stock.

    When rental as needed started to climb up after the real estate bust, conversions of owner-occupied single-family housesthe homes of rentals accommodated much of this development. These shifts likewise assisted to support for-sale markets, particularly in the Sunbelt metros with the biggest stocks of distressed and uninhabited single-family homes, the Harvard report said.

    Home-Equity Lending Rebounds, But Mainly For Wealthy House Owners

    A sharp recuperation in home costs over the previous couple of years has actually given house owners considerably more equity to tap, about $825 billion jointly, according to Black Knight Financial Solutions.

    This is almost 2 1/2 times the house equity that existed just 4 years earlier, but tapping that equity, in the kind of a home equity credit line (HELOC), is far more challenging than it remained in the last years, when a house was synonymous with an ATM.

    There is no concern that HELOCs being originated today are of exceptional credit quality, stated Ben Graboske, senior vice president at Black Knight Data amp; Analytics. In fact, HELOC originations in Q1 2015 had the highest-weighted typical credit scorecredit report on record.